Small Business Interview: JobRack Founder Neil Napier on Outsourcing – Small Business Show 119

Have you used outsourced talent for specific tasks in your Small Business? Ever run into quality problems? We thought so.

Neil Napier ran into so many problems outsourcing that he realized there was a business opportunity to minimize headaches and increase the quality of the talent pool and thus, JobRack was born!

Listen in to episode 119 of the Small Business Show and learn about the importance of having systems and procedures in place BEFORE deciding to outsource projects and how to get help if you don’t have either. We also discuss the pros and cons of outsourcing and what type of tasks lend themselves to using outsourced talent. Neil offers up some great tips to increase the likelihood of success with your outsourcing by developing Key Performance Indicators to insure that all progress is measurable.

We then jump into ways to use larger companies to jumpstart your business, riding on the “coattails” of a larger company to launch your own, how to educate your customers about quality over quantity and Neil takes the time to share with us how outsourcing is just like sex. Don’t skip ahead to this section!

Join us today for these tips and more, then click over to the Small Business Support Group to comment and get your questions asked!

Chapters/Timestamps:

  • 00:00:00 Small Business Show #119 May 17, 2017
  • 00:01:23 Neil Napier – JobRack
    • Forced to become a business owner – lost job and found inspiration
  • 00:05:00 Instant International Businessperson
  • 00:06:19 Systemizing Outsourcing
  • 00:08:36 Marketing Tool: Offering guidance
  • 00:09:22 Who benefits from Outsourcing?
  • 00:10:11 Managing expectations of your customers
  • 00:10:50 KPI: Set Key Performance Indicators for tasks within your business
  • 00:12:27 Riding on the coattails of a larger business to launch your own
    • Joining business forums to market your business.
  • 00:14:49 Quality over Quantity: Going beyond connecting people
  • 00:19:28 Difficulty turning brand evangelists into affiliates
  • 00:22:00 Best Mistake: subscription model priced too low
  • 00:24:38 Beware the ego of the entrepreneur!
  • 00:25:30 Outsourcing is like sex!
  • 00:26:39 Educating your clients – critical to growing your business
  • 00:27:45 Lesson: Be ready to serve each client individually
    • Be more aggressive!
  • 00:29:29 SBS Outtro

How to change the conversation when solving customer service problems in your Small Business – Small Business Show 118

It’s as simple as it is powerful. If we were using clickbait headlines, this one would read: This One Tip Will Make Your Customers Love You! But, since we don’t do that stuff on the Small Business Show, join us this week as we dive in deeper to the Two Tokens concept of Customer Service, as so eloquently described by Jean-Louis Gassée in his Monday Note.

Gassée, who has a storied history at Apple and founded Be Computing and the BeOS, uses the United Airlines customer service disaster to shine the spotlight on the concept of Two Tokens when solving customer service problems.

In a nutshell, the Two Tokens concept states that: “When a customer brings a complaint, there are two tokens on the table: It’s Nothing and It’s Awful. Both tokens are always played, so whoever chooses first forces the other to grab the token that’s left.” Your Small Business Show co-hosts were so impressed with how Gassée explained this concept and how important it can be when solving problems, that they spent the entire Small Business Show today digging into the practice and discussing how powerful it is.

Listen in, and then join us in the Small Business Support Group to discuss and learn more!

Chapters/Timestamps:

  • 00:00:00 Small Business Show #118 May 10, 2017
  • 00:01:43 Balancing multiple businesses
  • 00:02:53 Dangling the Carrot
  • 00:03:40 Every business is the customer service business
  • 00:05:54 Jean-Louis Gassée and Customer Service Tokens
  • 00:09:11 The customer is ready for a fight. They already don’t trust you
  • 00:12:02 Get excited. Be demonstrative.
  • 00:16:26 SBS 118 Outtro

Small Business Interview with David Denning Co-Founder of Jumpanzee – Small Business Show 117

Jumpanzee Small Business ShowCan you work from anywhere? Is your dream to create a business that can be managed from Thailand, Europe, Florida and anywhere in-between? If so, you need to meet the folks from Jumpanzee. Join us on episode 117 of the Small Business Show!

After spending years working for Ginormous Corp, David Denning and his wife Elle wanted to own a business that would give them the flexibility to live anywhere on Earth for months at a time. Jumpanzee, a branding, design and web management firm, allowed them to do just that.

After spending time discussing the challenges of running your business from an island, we jump into a discussion of distinguishing yourself in a crowded marketplace without getting into a race to the bottom on pricing, how to manage customer expectations and understanding that you can’t be everything to everyone and still be the best at what you do.

It wouldn’t be a Small Business Show interview without finding out about David’s “best” mistake that taught him some powerful lessons about making yourself accessible 24/7 and learning that time is your most precious commodity. We then talk about the obstacles in the way of scaling Jumpanzee and how David and his team are overcoming them.

Shannon and Dave wrap up the show with a discussion about just what exactly an “Explainer” video is and how Jumpanzee uses them to market their customers businesses.

Listen in and learn, then jump over to the Small Business Show Support Group to comment and connect with Jumpanzee!

 

Chapters/Timestamps:

  • 00:00:00 Small Business Show #117 May 3, 2017
  • 00:01:32 David Denning from Jumpanzee <http://jumpanzee.com>
  • 00:03:27 Goal: Start a location independent business
  • 00:04:53 The ups – and downs – of being a digial nomad in business
  • 00:06:35 Managing time zones
    • Helps if you are a night person. Bad internet access
  • 00:07:57 Managing customer expectations
  • 00:08:52 Balancing project work with ongoing revenue
  • 00:10:10 You can’t be everything to everybody and still be good
  • 00:11:28 Jumpanzee?
  • 00:13:05 Buying a 3-month old business
  • 00:14:00 Differentiating yourself without using price
  • 00:16:35 But still post your prices!
  • 00:22:37 Favorite mistake: live chat!
  • 00:25:00 Biggest obstacle: How to scale
  • 00:26:45 Explaining “explainer videos”
  • 00:29:48 SBS 117 Outtro

Small Business Interview with Lance Lewsader of Bolt NWA – Small Business Show 116

Bolt NWA Escape Room ExperienceWe’re strong proponents of finding something you love to do and creating a business around it. Lance Lewsader had such a great time getting out of an escape room attraction a couple of years ago that he decided to create his own and Bolt NWA was born!

Bolt NWA is an Escape Room Experience where customers have one hour to find clues, solve puzzles and work together to escape the room. Bolt has three rotating concept rooms, including Locked!, The Vault and Day Dream. Lance and his team have created a successful business while getting involved closely with their community to serve multiple “bottom lines”.

We start the show with your co-hosts Shannon and Dave getting educated about the Escape Room phenomenon, a fast growing attraction that is increasing in popularity around the country. Lance spends some time discussing Bolt’s history and how they have grown the business quickly, while connecting with their local community and charity organizations.

Not content to just enjoy fast growth of Bolt on his own, Lance has franchised the business concept and explains how that process works. Your hosts are impressed that what usually can be a very complicated process, is just one more way to grow the business to Lance. But enough about success, we also want to know about those all important mistakes that teach Small Business owners so much. For Bolt, it was partnering with friends that got the business off to a rocky start. We wrap up the show with a talk about measuring success, what’s important beyond profit and what obstacles stand in Bolt’s way and how Lance plans to overcome them.

Join us today for a fun show about a fun business concept! Listen in and then visit the Small Business Support Group to comment and ask questions.

Chapters/Timestamps:

  • 00:00:00 Small Business Show #116 April 26, 2017
  • 00:01:18 Ghost Pepper Salt!
  • 00:01:49 Lance Lewsader – Bolt NWA Escape Room
  • 00:04:37 Ride the wave! 950 to 2,500 in 18 months!
  • 00:07:40 The F word: Franchising
  • 00:11:09 Leverage your specific expertise
  • 00:13:07 Repeat business? Keep it fresh!
  • 00:14:51 When in doubt… and when in trouble: consult with a lawyer
  • 00:18:00 Charity is success
  • 00:22:56 Advice: make mistakes!
  • 00:24:08 Can you Bolt?

Using Video to Promote Your Small Business – Adam Rahn from Droi Media – Small Business Show 115

Droi MediaAre you using video to market your Small Business? What problems does it solve and how about problems it can create? Join us today on the Small Business Show where we meet Adam Rahn of Droi Media to find answers to these questions and learn about Adam’s journey from freelancer to Small Business owner.

Adam shares his surprise at just how many “hats” he is now wearing to get his business up and running and how to manage those non-billable hours that can eat up your time as a Small Business owner. Dave and Shannon suggest diving into the EMyth book to learn more about working “on” your business instead of always “in” it and developing an org chart, even if your name fills every job duty.

We also spend some time talking about ways to promote yourself as an expert in your community, how to say no to new business when it is not in your (or your clients) best interest and what methods work well for communicating with new clients.

Winding up the show, we focus on the importance of digging deep to find your niche and keeping yourself creative when creativity is your business.

Join us today on the Small Business Show for these topics and more, then jump over to the Small Business Support Group to share your thoughts!

Chapters/Timestamps:

  • 00:00:00 Small Business Show #115 April 19, 2017
  • 00:01:28 Adam Rahn – Droi Media
  • 00:04:33 Wearing many hats
  • 00:06:09 EMyth – Working ON your business, not just IN it
  • 00:07:08 Non-billable hours
  • 00:08:04 “15 Minutes is Too Long” – Finding out what the client wants
  • 00:11:37 Turning away business is sometimes a profitable decision
  • 00:13:44 Position yourself as the community expert
  • 00:17:20 Choose the right communication tools with your clients
  • 00:20:13 When your creativity is your business
  • 00:22:37 Becoming a grunt!
  • 00:24:07 Future planning: carving a deeper niche
  • 00:27:19 SBS 115 Outtro

Small Business Human Resource Interview with Kelly Loudermilk of BuildHR – Small Business Show 114

Have you been trained in Human Resource management? Things like legal hiring practices, at-will employment, harassment policies and employee manual development? We didn’t think so.

HR issues can plague small businesses of all sizes, especially once you hit the magic 50-employee number that activates all kinds of regulations and requirements. You need some help!

Today on the Small Business Show, Dave and Shannon meet and talk to Kelly Loudermilk, founder of BuildHR, a human resource outsourcing and consulting firm that can make your Small Business life much better. Come along for the discussion and learn how a few quick questions at a Rotary function set Kelly on the path to launch her own Small Business to help other business owners succeed, while not having to worry about their HR compliance issues.

We touch on topics including recognizing your own expertise to create a business, why you need an employee manual and best practices during the hiring process – because you just never know if that question you really want to ask is actually legal. 

Finally, Kelly shares her marketing experiences with Facebook ads, answering questions on Reddit and getting involved in local Chamber of Commerce events.

Join us on episode 114 of the Small Business Show for this and much more, then visit the Small Business Show Support Group on Facebook to discuss the show and get your questions answered!

Chapters/Timestamps:

  • 00:00:00 Small Business Show #114 April 12, 2017
  • 00:01:40 Kelly Loudermilk
  • 00:02:10 BuildHR <https://www.yourhrsource.com>
  • 00:03:19 It started at the Rotary Club
  • 00:04:42 Recognizing Your Expertise
  • 00:05:13 Growing businesses need help from 15 employees and up!
  • 00:07:07 Good HR means better recruiting – offer the Cadillac package
  • 00:08:51 Marketing BuildHR
    • Facebook ads lead to success!
    • Networking, local chambers
    • Reddit!
  • 00:10:37 What you can’t ask during an interview!
  • 00:13:07 Did you New Yorkers know you can’t ask about salary? Kelly did!
  • 00:14:09 Get yourself an employee handbook… and more… templatized!
  • 00:20:20 Being a consultant means still serving the client in the end
  • Objective Key Results
  • 00:25:16 Starting a business is all about the journey
  • 00:27:20 YourHRSource.com

Developing a Small Business Revenue Stack and being told when you are wrong – Small Business Show 113

In your Small Business, do you value being told when you are wrong? Would you like to have a Revenue Stack that generates cash from multiple sources? Do you know what the Scotty Principle is? Join us on Episode 113 of the Small Business Show for these topics and more!

We all love it when we’re right. But as you know, Dave and Shannon love hearing about mistakes, the “wrongs” that teach us all so much. Are your employees or colleagues comfortable telling you when you’re wrong? Do you encourage it? Dave spends some time on the show explaining a new policy he’s enacted to be sure this happens in his Small Business.

During the past year, we’ve discussed Scott Adams’ book and his Talent Stack concept. Shannon takes the stack concept and applies it to Revenue, discussing concepts to insure you’re not relying on just one source of cash to fuel your Charmed Life. We’ve invited some excellent guests to join us on the Small Business Show in the near future to discuss how they have developed their own Revenue Stacks – stay with us, it’s going to be awesome.

Finally, when you have a Revenue Stack, you’re often faced with hiring outside service providers and contractors to help support those businesses. The guys discuss the Scotty Principle and frustrations with Small Business owners that don’t get the concept of under-promising and over-delivering.

Join us today on the Small Business Show, then head over to our Small Business Support Group to discuss the show and ask questions!

Chapters/Timestamps:

  • 00:00:00 Small Business Show #113 April 5, 2017
  • 00:01:00 Surrounding yourself with people who will tell you when you are “wrong”
    • No “yes men”
    • Requesting “You’re Wrong…”
  • 00:05:48 Scott Adams’ Talent Stack
  • 00:07:23 Key to Success: The Revenue Stack
  • 00:08:35 Digging into the Serial vs. Parallel Entrepreneur Concepts
  • 00:14:16 Revenue Stacks require the use of service providers/contractors – Can be frustrating
  • 00:16:50 You’re gonna get paid: show up to do the work!
  • 00:19:17 The Scotty Principle! – Underpromise and overdeliver if you can
    • Managing your customers’ expectations.
  • 00:22:28 Contact us at the Small Business Support Group

Small Business Interview with Justin Sisley of Digidern Bookkeeping – Small Business Show 112

small business show interview with justin sisley of digidern bookkeepingWe often ask our guests on the Small Business Show to tell us about their biggest mistake in business, as well as what advice they would have given themselves if they could go back to when they were just getting started. A very common response: Better accounting, better bookkeeping! On today’s episode, we are thrilled to have Justin Sisley of Digidern Bookkeeping as our guest to discuss the how and why of keeping track of your cash, as well as lessons from his own business experiences.

The show begins with a discussion about what makes a good bookkeeper, how NOT to choose one and what to look for when searching for someone to help guide your accounting decisions. We quickly move into business strategy topics such as pricing your services, replicating yourself to grow (can you?) and the best marketing practices for service and consulting businesses.

As the show proceeds, we get back into some accounting basics, such as not doing your own payroll and how critically important it is to keep up with your bookkeeping so you can catch mistakes, problems and opportunities early.

Join Dave Hamilton and Shannon Jean on episode 112 of the Small Business Show for these topics and more. Then, head over to the Small Business Show support group on Facebook to meet Justin and get your bookkeeping questions answered.

 

Chapters/Timestamps:

  • 00:00:00 Small Business Show #112 March 29, 2017
  • 00:00:55 Justin Sisley from Digidern Bookkeeping
  • 00:03:11 How did that begin?
  • 00:05:04 Anyone can be a bookkeeper… what separates you?
  • 00:06:19 Take someone’s headaches away
  • 00:08:00 Target the bootstrappers!
  • 00:09:26 You can’t replicate yourself, don’t try!
  • 00:12:18 Pricing yourself: show that you’re serious
  • 00:13:42 Marketing yourself as a solopreneur consultant
    • Thumbtack
    • Using social media to connect with small business owners – find businesses that you are passionate about.
  • 00:16:39 You’re in a niche, target another niche
  • 00:18:14 Stay the course, or use the shotgun approach?
    • Following different business ideas
    • Designated Driver business concept – first business.
  • 00:21:21 Putting off Accounting – #1 mistake
  • 00:23:34 Don’t do your own Payroll!
  • 00:25:40 Back in time with advice! Resist the shiny objects – focus on your core business
  • 00:28:46 Uniquely Qualified … Unfair Competitive Advantage!
  • 00:30:37 Finding Justin

Dave Launches Apple Market Forum, Partnerships and Embracing Apprehension –  Small Business Show 111

Apple Market ForumToday on the Small Business Show, we discuss the launch of the Apple Market Forum, Dave’s new business venture with longtime colleague, Paul Kent. Shannon gets a chance to quiz Dave about the impetus for starting AMF and some of the juicy details behind the concept for the event that will be held this summer in Silicon Valley.

During the course of the show, we discuss some critical aspects of partnerships including differing skill sets, mutual expectations and managing different types of communication. Other topics include finding an expert in a different field than your own to partner with, limiting the launch size of a new business and developing no-nonsense, clear communication with your business partners.

We wrap up the show with a discussion about feeling nervous or apprehensive can be a good thing and the trick of insuring your success (or failure) by your thoughts.

Join us today for these topics and more! Then jump over to the Small Business Show Support Group to share your comments.

Chapters/Timestamps:

  • 00:00:00 Small Business Show #111 March 22, 2017
  • 00:03:18 Apple Market Forum – Dave’s & Paul Kent’s new gig
  • 00:06:08 How long have you been planning?
  • 00:08:06 Partnering with an expert
  • 00:11:20 Limiting your launch in size  – easier to manage, scarcity
  • 00:13:25 Be careful of overwhelming yourself
  • 00:17:39 Believing is Creating. Success/Failure
  • 00:17:58 Do good partners make good partnerships?
  • 00:25:27 Teach yourself to crave apprehension
  • 00:26:52 SBS Outtro

Small Business Interview with Mike Pile of Uppercase Branding – Small Business Show Episode 110

uppercase branding interview small business showWhat’s in a name? Everything when it comes to your company or brand! As founders, owners and stewards of Small Businesses, we all know how important your company or brand name is. Joining us today on the Small Business Show, Mike Pile, Founder of Uppercase Branding discusses his own business as well as sharing tips and methods for coming up with great names.

Mike discusses how prioritizing tasks and projects when you are the boss can be one of the most challenging adjustments after leaving a corporate job, along with being sure to disconnect at the end of the day to keep your creative juices flowing. We then move on to discussing how Uppercase got its start and what marketing methods worked the best for them. You might be surprised to hear what traditional methods produced the best results.

Later on the show, we spend time talking about how to come up with a great name for your business or brand with some examples of good and bad.

Listen in to your co-hosts Dave Hamilton and Shannon Jean and then post your comments and questions to our Small Business Support Group on Facebook!

Chapters/Timestamps:

  • 00:00:00 Small Business Show #110 March 15, 2017
  • 00:01:09 Mike Pile from Uppercase Branding joins us today
  • 00:01:50 “Verbal Identity Consultancy”
  • 00:03:42 Pulling out stories from companies
  • 00:05:18 Prioritizing tasks and projects
  • 00:06:43 Being your own boss: scary and liberating
  • 00:07:49 Disconnecting to keep your creativity flowing
  • 00:10:21 Marketing YOUR B2B Marketing business – using existing connections
  • 00:13:43 A gift in the mail
  • 00:18:09 “Brainstorming is a waste of time” Strategy and discovery
  • 00:23:09 “A great name won’t help a bad business model” A bad name can be a distraction
  • 00:25:09 Vetting your name is just as valuable as creating one
  • 00:26:23 Norman Awards – Great new brand names.
    • Good: “Adwash” – Samsung. Not so good: “Scion” – Hotels
  • 00:30:07 Set a big stretch goal