Be an Ethical Entrepreneur, Marketer, and Business Builder

Hire based on the job description… That you write after the interview…

We’ve had a couple of adjustments to make between my 2 businesses lately. Namely, our top sales person based on revenue generated quit with 2 days notice…  The day he provided his notice I launched 2 new radio ads that “indirectly” generated 6 leads in the first day he was out of the office. I say indirectly because none of the appointments have been run yet so I don’t have any feedback from our sales professionals as to the prospect’s reason for calling. Obviously asking them how they heard about us is a waste of time, which is why both ads have a specific offer only available by mentioning the ad. 😉

Writing a job description shouldn't be this hard...

Writing a job description shouldn

At any rate, there are a few important aspects to recruiting:

  1. ALWAYS be recruiting.
  2. Have a plan so when you find the perfect person you can impress them.
  3. Have a basic job description that you then tailor to that “perfect” person.

When people ask me if we’re hiring my standard response is “we’re always looking for great team members.” Finding loyal, hard-working, reliable team members is one of the hardest parts of business so if you meet the “perfect” person for your team while visiting another business are you really going to sit by and do nothing? Great people pay for themselves. Granted, you may not have a spot in your current business right that moment however you may have one over the next few months or years as your business matures. Heck, you may even buy a business for that perfect person to run. I personally had someone recruit me for over 5 years before I called them up one day and said “so do you still have an opportunity for me?” (of course he did).

So now that your eyes are open, how do you know they’re “perfect” for the team? Moreover, how can you make sure they’re “perfect”?

This is where my opinions differ a bit from Brad Sugars, Michael Gerber, Michael Masterson and even Marcus Buckingham (their books are all in my Recommended Reading section). Actually I agree with all of them as well – I just decided to blend their philosophies…

Before we get into the job description, you absolutely MUST have your Vision, Mission, and Points of Culture. Not only is it crucial for you to make sure you find someone who can fit into that culture, it has been the absolute best recruiting tool I possess. When you bring out your Points of Culture during the interview process, people are impressed. They immediately respect your attention to detail, focus on ethics, and business savvy. If for no other reason than it seems to be common sense, yet they’ve never seen anyone else do anything like that. 🙂

Back to the job description… Make sure you have one for every open position in your company. That description does not have to be extremely detailed, but it should include at least the top 3 responsibilities for that position (that’s a Brad Sugar’s concept though I can’t remember from which book), compensation, team members for whom they will be responsible, and a general description of their overall purpose are necessary prior to an interview. My descriptions also include a section for “Test and Measure” where I list specific numbers they’ll be responsible for improving through testing and measuring. For instance, Average Dollar Sale, Closing Ratio, Daily Break-even, etc. may all be important “Test and Measure” concepts for a particular position. It’s my responsibility as the Team Leader to provide them with those numbers and provide the education and resources necessary to improve them.

So your pre-interview job description may look something like this:

Compensation: Fifteen percent commission of all gross sales with a target of $50,000 in sales per month.

General Responsibility: Generate new revenue for the business by presenting the best solutions to our target market.

Specific Responsibilities:

  1. Present products to clients and prospects
  2. Generate leads on your own in addition to those generated through our marketing
  3. Ensure that every client is so happy they’re excited to provide referrals

Test and Measure:

  1. Average Dollar Sale for your sales
  2. Average # of transactions per year per customer
  3. Closing ratio

The need for those basic points is simply to make sure you are being realistic in your search for the perfect person. It’s basically common sense things like you wouldn’t try to recruit someone making $50,000 per year for a $10/hour position even if they are perfect. The job description ensures that you’re focused on the person with the proper traits.

Now here’s the important part, after you find that person, interview them, and learn a bit about their passions, talents, and skills, you need to expand on your job description to ensure that new recruit will be doing what they do best as often as possible (Marcus Buckingham harps on that in all of his books).

For instance, my current openings are in sales. Your stereotypical sales professional can’t stand paperwork, is rather disorganized, but is extremely outgoing, excellent at building rapport quickly, reading people, and isn’t afraid to ask for an order.  That type of personality would lend to having all appointments, follow-ups, paperwork etc. handled by someone other than the sales professional so they can just focus on getting in front of prospects. His job description might include generating new business by cold-calling or canvassing because he enjoys the challenge. However, what happens if you find a talented sales professional who is organized, loves to know how a business works, enjoys building longer-term relationships, and even feels comfortable documenting what they do. Well you write up her job description to focus on setting up relationships with complementary businesses who can be constant lead sources, you have her document the steps she took to build those relationships, and for the most part you don’t require her to do any cold-calling or canvassing because if she’s not passionate about it she won’t be good at it anyway. If possible, you probably still want someone else in your office managing the paperwork, appointments, etc. however a person with that type of personality may be more effective juggling her own schedule because of her highly-organized nature.

This is where I differ a bit from Michael Gerber who focuses on creating your organizational chart right from the beginning with full job descriptions. The chances of you finding the person who fits your detailed job description perfectly on every point is nearly impossible. If Michael Gerber had actually ever owned a business before writing his book he would know that. 😉

Michael Masterson, on the other hand, teaches that all of your top-level people should have the same job description – “Whatever is best for the customer”. Sorry, that’s just a prescription for chaos… Reference my blog on the lessons 5-6 year olds taught me for a better analysis of why.

In summary, ALWAYS be looking for new recruits, be prepared to set yourself apart from any other business the recruit has ever dealt with, and then tailor your job description to focus on her doing whatever she does best as often as possible.

To your success, Bryan

The 3 pieces to becoming successful at ANYTHING… (seriously)

I know, that sounds ridiculous… But take a few minutes, learn the basic concepts, and if you haven’t heard this before, you’ll be amazed at the clarity this can bring to almost anything you do in life. I find myself teaching this lesson to more of my friends and family than probably anything else I’ve EVER learned so LEARN IT!

Here’s the basic formula:

Do x Be = Have

Now I originally learned this formula through Brad Sugar’s Entrepreneur Masters Class however I’m pretty sure he got it from someone else… If you know who originally came up with this, let me know.

The unique thing about this formula is you have to start on the right and work left – the opposite of how you normally read – to make it work.


Make a list of what you want to Have in life, at your job, at school, in your mate, etc. etc. etc.

How much money? What kind of house(s)? Any boats or nice cars? Family? What will your job be like? How often will you vacation and where? You get the idea. WRITE DOWN what you want to Have in your life.

Writing this down is essential. A few years back I recall reading about a survey that was conducted on Harvard business graduates at their 20 year anniversary. They asked the graduates, who had written down their goals when they graduated from school – 3% had written goals and 97% did not. They then found out that the 3% who had specific written goals had amassed more wealth than the other 97% combined. And it wasn’t like those 97% were slackers. They were all Harvard graduates so they had to have at least a little talent. Honestly I read so much I can’t recall where I learned this story, so if you know, please let me know. 🙂


Now, look around you and determine who has what you want to Have. What kind of job do they have? Do they have their own business? Do they have a college degree? What kind of degree? How many hours per week do they work? What do they attribute to their success?

Now you have to figure out who you have to Be to get what you want to Have. In other words, if you love children and want to be a teacher, but your list also includes a summer home in the Outer Banks, can Being a teacher allow you to Have that house? If there are any other teachers who have vacation homes down there, learn what else they had to Become (besides a teacher) to afford it.

This is the most often overlooked step. Everyone knows what they want to Have and think they know what they have to Do to get there. But they never figure out who they have to Be. Without Being the person who can Have what you want, NO amount of Doing will get you there. More than likely, you’ll just be Doing the wrong things.

If you have no idea who you have to Be to become a millionaire, check out The Millionaire Mindby Thomas Stanley. It’s a book based on lengthy surveys filled out by over 1300 millionaires. If you want to learn what kind of people Become millionaires, this is the book for you.


The last piece to our equation is figuring out what you have to Do to be who you need to Be.

Where do you need to go to school? (if at all) Who do you need to associate with? Where do you need to live? When do you need to start planning or saving?

What do you need to Do, to become who you need to Be, to get what you want to Have.

Keep in mind that if you make a list of want you want to Have in a spouse, you better figure out who you need to Be so that when you meet that person you’ve already done what you need to Do to hit it off with them. Think about it. That makes sense, right? You better be a perfect person yourself if your list describes the perfect person. hahaha

In my life, this became very clear to me almost immediately after learning it. I went to a top 10 engineering school and became a mechanical engineer because I love cars, motorcycles, and engineering in general. However, I also want an island. A nice little private island with a place to land a plane and helicopter. Maybe a 9 hole golf course and a nice comfortable villa to relax in. After looking around at all the engineers I knew, it became very apparent that Being an engineer was not going to get me what I wanted to Have. Being a successful business man will, however. Not only will it allow me to engineer new designs for automotive and motorcycle applications at my leisure, it will also allow me the possibility of an island. Something being an engineer alone could never do.

Are you doing what you need to Do, to become who you need to Be, to enjoy what you want to Have?

To your success, Bryan

The best 6 books to teach you how to generate wealth…

When I started business “consulting” at the ripe old age of 20 with no actual business ownership and management experience, I ran into a few problems. My job was to implement a new software system that would significantly change the work flow of a business. In that process I would have to recommend ways to handle leads, in-bound and out-bound calls, inventory, receivables, and offer suggestions on what management reports to run. I learned that to get buy-in it was necessary to explain WHY they needed to do all of this. No matter how much I knew or how many businesses I helped, a 21 year old wasn’t ever going to get much respect right away. So I learned a quick way to build rapport is to use “experts” to make some suggestions instead of me just making them. In other words I learned to use books to backup my expertise and build instant credibility. I furthered that credibility by publishing articles in trade magazines when I was 22… But that’s a different story. 🙂

So after years of reading books on real estate, investing, business building, sales, marketing, and psychology here are the ones that offer the BEST advice for wealth building in the order of importance.

  1. Billionaire In Trainingby Brad Sugars: If you don’t know this guy then you need to. He retired with $10 million in the bank at age 26 for a few years. Then got bored and launched what is now the largest business coaching business in the world, Action Coach International. Now at age 34 he’s been involved in over 50 businesses and is using the formula in this book to become a very young billionaire. The best book of its kind.
  2. Ready, Fire, Aim: Zero to $100 Million in No Time Flatby Michael Masterson: Masterson’s approach is a bit different than Sugar’s which is why I liked it. Masterson talks in detail about starting and growing a business step-by-step, whereas Brad says don’t waste your time starting one, just buy one. Regardless, Masterson has turned himself into a hundred millionaire and retired for the first time at age 39. He provides some excellent tools particularly his insights into marketing and back-end sales.
  3. The E-Myth Revisited: Why Most Small Businesses Don’t Work and What to Do About Itby Michael Gerber: One of the best business books ever according to Inc. magazine. Gerber breaks down the reason most businesses fail to the owners misunderstandings about business. The greatest misunderstanding – that because I’m a good plumber, electrician, accountant, lawyer, etc. I’m gonna be great at running a business that will allow me to use my sweet skills.
  4. First, Break All the Rules: What the World’s Greatest Managers Do Differentlyby Marcus Buckingham: After interviewing 80,000 managers in 20,000 different organizations over 20 years Buckingham has broken down the best way to measure employee productivity and happiness to 12 simple questions. If 12 is too many he even gives you ways to shorten that list depending on your goals. If you EVER plan on doing a performance review or have employees, read this book.
  5. Built to Last: Successful Habits of Visionary Companiesby Jim Collins and Jerry Porras: The greatest lesson I took away from this book was that Gerber and Sugars are right. Even the greatest businesses over the last 100 years were founded to be great businesses from the start NOT to provide a great product. That’s a VERY important distinction. Sorry to dissapoint all those high-ranked business schools that say you need the product first. 🙂
  6. The Millionaire Mindby Thomas Stanley: This book is a compilation of data from survey’s answered by over 1300 millionaire’s. Some of his findings are quite interesting. The most important 2 were that the number 1 thing millionaire’s attribute to their success is “Being honest with all people.” The second is that most millionaires were at or below average according to our fine education system. They were mostly college dropouts , C students, and averaged less than 1000 on their SAT’s.

Though I’ve read Robert Allen’s Nothing Down for the 90sand Hagstrom’s The Warren Buffett Way and Peter Lynch’s Beating the Street along with dozens of other books and online services related to real estate and investing, I have very purposely left those out. I’m not saying they’re poor books, because they are all VERY good (Robert Allen inspired me to buy my first rental property at 21) – however, as Brad Sugars points out in “Billionaire in Training” you don’t climb the capital ladder (i.e. real estate and stocks/securities) until you’ve climbed the cash flow ladder. In other words, until you have cashflow to backup your real estate investments and securities in case of trouble, you’re wasting your time with those. I know in the instance of both my real estate investments and stocks/mutual funds I NEEDED cashflow (from my job) to cover them.

To your success, Bryan