Don´t Go Out of Business in Your First Year
Season 1: Episode 18

This is a written Transcription for the episode: How to Not Go Out of Business in Your first Year

Don´t Go Out of Business in Your First Yea Transcription

Full Written Transcript of The Episode

Matt Tompkins: Hello and welcome to the Omaha podcast, where Omaha’s most successful entrepreneurs help you grow your business. I’m your host, Matt Tomkins of Two Brothers Creative. So how many businesses fail? Unfortunately, the odds are not in our favor. Over half of new businesses fail within just the first five years. Only about 25% of businesses make it longer than 15 years. So how do you not go out of business within your first year? On today’s episode of the Omaha podcast, Anequim´s CFO Jeremy Aspen joins us. He’s going to share with us why businesses fail, what to look out for and how to increase your chance of success and the crucial things that you need to know on how to not go out of business in your first year. We’ve been doing these episodes helping local business owners and entrepreneurs in Omaha, Nebraska, here. And as a resident of Omaha and a relatively new small business owner in the last few years, at least giving it the full go, the full, full throated effort. I thought, you know, I got this down. I know everything. Like I’ve watched all the videos and I’ve seen the TED talks and, you know, I’m just crushing it. And we did an episode about businesses going out of business and how that’s just a 25 25% of businesses make it longer than ten years.

Matt Tompkins: And that is just a shocking statistic. And I don’t think any of those businesses ever thought that they would be the one that would go out of business. So I thought, you know, well, maybe I should maybe I should just be sure, you know, went in and looked at things. And I’m glad I did, because there were a lot of things I just never considered. You know, I’m more creative and kind of free going. I’m not the analytical business expert, so I learned a lot very quickly or had to make some some very, very big changes. And this can be a process that is often skipped. And I want to share that because I think I’ve done almost everything wrong when it comes to how to not go out of business In your first year or two of operations today, we’re going to learn from a guy who is all the things I’m not, I don’t know. Cool. Yeah, I mean, that’s a good way to do that. Isn’t that how you introduce people? I’m all the things Matt is not.

Jeremy Aspen: Yeah, I’m pretty much everyone here in town gets it.

Matt Tompkins: Yeah. Jeremy Aspen is here on the show. Jeremy is currently the CFO and founder of Anequim, and he also had Wistar Property Management Group, which you recently sold. We’ve had your wife on the show and Jeremy was like, What about me? I’m like, okay, fine.

Jeremy Aspen: One, whatever will make you feel part of the family.

Matt Tompkins: You’re pretty cool too, but you have some really innovative and I think some very, very practical ways that people can start a business and have a game plan. I have a business strategy to fund that. And then if you have started out already, how to not go out of business.

Jeremy Aspen: Yeah. So it’s one thing that we do as a company. So one thing if, if your viewers are wondering what’s anarchism, we have only about six employees in the United States. All five of them are here in Omaha and we have 900 employees outside of the country out in Mexico, specifically in the Philippines. So that you haven’t heard of us might not be all that surprising.

Matt Tompkins: Hang on. You were in the news headlines. So let me back up All humblebrag for you for a second. So Anequim was recently named the fourth fastest growing private company in the state of Nebraska. And like, what, 509, 612 612. I knew.

Jeremy Aspen: It was.

Matt Tompkins: Started with an S. Yeah. So 612 in the country, that is just phenomenal. And this this company that you and Gwen Aspen, you started, you founded you created from just an idea.

Jeremy Aspen: Yeah.

Matt Tompkins: In a phone. And how many years ago was that that you got to start it to where you are today.

Jeremy Aspen: Well okay so that would have been probably about 15 years ago where we started with Star Group, which was a local company, property management company, and then I think it was 2017. Yes, 18. We started up an income.

Matt Tompkins: Yeah. And it’s gotten years. Yeah.

Jeremy Aspen: Yeah. It’s been great. But a lot of the reason that has worked out okay is because I’d made a whole bunch of those mistakes with my first company. And that’s where I think if there’s some young up and coming entrepreneurs, let me just tell you, there’s things you can do to make things not go wrong or not for it to be so hard. I mean, you can still muscle through all the trouble, all the pain you used to put yourself through all that trouble. But you can also really increase the likelihood of survival, your company’s survival with. I guess if I were going to pick one word, it’d be just discipline.

Matt Tompkins: Yeah. I mean, it’s okay to not be original in the sense that operating a business, the operations, the financials, your sales and marketing, there are creative elements. Yes. That are original and be innovative, but the basic structure of it, it really works pretty, pretty, pretty much across the board. I mean, it doesn’t matter what business it is, there are certain fundamental things that you need. And I did some research for today because I wanted to see how like how good or bad I actually did. And I’m sharing my my story flaws and all because I think perhaps the biggest disservice that we make is by going out and pretending that everything is just fine and everything is good and well. Let me. No, no, I’ve got plenty of money. I’m going on a vacation. I haven’t even seen my Instagram photos. I mean, come on.

Jeremy Aspen: You see, my credit card is great.

Matt Tompkins: And then we’re then we internalize all of that stress and it becomes overwhelming. It affects not just the business, but your personal life, your health, your relationships. It is detrimental effect. So so I share that. Say I’m not perfect. I mean, there are a lot of things I do, right? I mean, trust me, my wife will tell you, but I will share when I. I am learning because that’s what this is all about, is you’re always learning, as I’m sure you are today. So the list I found, Jeremy know the taxes is number one. And I think by this they mean put money aside for taxes.

Jeremy Aspen: Well, yeah so but I’m I’m one of the I really like to be able to focus on things that I’m good at. And I get really frustrated when I have to do anything that isn’t included in that. That isn’t something that I’m good at. Taxes and insurance are my least favorite things in the world. I hate it, but you don’t really want to neglect it. But if you do look into it enough to understand that, or if you know your numbers well enough, you can understand about what your tax bill is going to be at the end of the year. And especially if you’re paying it quarterly, if you’re just starting, maybe you’re not there yet, but a certain amount of your revenue, just keep it off to the side, you know.

Matt Tompkins: Which I didn’t do. I went on like wild, just luxurious, all inclusive. The Norwegian is the Norwegian yacht tours they do or whatever they’re called. I did like five of them in one year and I’m kidding you. That didn’t do any nice.

Jeremy Aspen: Yeah. Yeah. You get those experience at front load life with those experiences when you can’t afford.

Matt Tompkins: I’ll be broke when I’m older. Yeah, I’ll wait till I’m rich or whatever you want to call that.

Jeremy Aspen: Yeah. Yeah. You destitute, you’ll be more destitute.

Matt Tompkins: Was this a mistake you think you made early on? Like not setting enough money aside with.

Jeremy Aspen: No, you know what?

Matt Tompkins: Star before with.

Jeremy Aspen: Anyone. So when it comes to the taxes and just money, generally speaking, I’ve just never done debt. So there’s this other thing. It depends on the kind of business that you’re operating, because if you have an inventory intensive company, you’ve got to push cash through your system, you’ve got to buy inventory, you’ve got to hold it. And then and it makes it a lot harder to hold money off to this physically hold money off to the side. And because it puts you it’s somewhat detrimental to your ability to pay other bills and things. So there is a bit of a dance and balance. But if we’re talking like a services industry like ours, I’ve just always been really disciplined to make sure that we we had enough money saved off at the side of the year. And you have to because they what it sounds counterintuitive, but nobody’s ever gone broke paying taxes sounds in sounds ridiculous. But the fact of the matter is, if you’re paying your taxes, you’re going to be okay. You’re not paying your taxes, you’re in trouble.

Matt Tompkins: So, yeah, which I definitely did. Government. No, I’m kidding. And I want to I just want to back up just a second. So at the end of this episode, if you have made all these mistakes like I have, and I may be asking this just for myself to just save my own skin, but we’re going to Jeremy’s going to give us some some some pro tips on on how to get the how to right the ship, how to get back on track. So I don’t want you to feel like, oh, my God, I have rued I’ve done all these things wrong and it’s the end of into my business. No, that’s not the case. As long as you recognize it and deal with it and have a plan and follow through with it, I think you can always get things back on track. Jeremy, with your with you the way you started out. Maybe you can kind of, because like the things I did here, like, you know, the taxes don’t spend all of your income is another one. Do the bulk of the work yourself and I do do that for most of it. Promote yourself and you have to network and market fast. But I think you can offer a very unique perspective, a creative way to look at this in how you approach how you and Gwen when you started off with with with Star.

Jeremy Aspen: So you didn’t.

Matt Tompkins: Have the millions of dollars in the fame and fortune, right?

Jeremy Aspen: Yeah. Well, so we do I mean, if I’m if I’m talking to a business owner and by the way, we do do some consulting for hundreds of other property management companies around the country. And this is stuff that we tell them, you have got to have policies and procedures so that you audit so that decisions are already made. You don’t need to. Every time something comes up, use your brains power to determine what the next step is. Automate it. If you can automate it, automate it, but at the very least, make sure that you’ve put the you frontloaded all of your energies into the procedures so that you can into your operations so that you’re saving yourself time down the road. So an example is payables. Have a system that includes you put the bills into your software, you code it correctly, and then on a certain day of the week you approve the bills. And then on another day of the week, the next day you print the checks. Get used to doing that right now.

Matt Tompkins: So simplify that, though, because people heard the word code and they’re like, what? Okay, right, right. So so simplify it.

Jeremy Aspen: You get a bill for rent. Yeah. All right. You know, when it’s due. When you get the bill, let’s just say they invoice you, you put it into the system, you put it in your QuickBooks or whatever software that you’re using, you put it in correctly who it’s going to get paid to. What the due date is, and then you code it, which is to say you put you code it as rent write. These are rent, you save it and then have the start with the discipline now of every Thursday morning sometime going in and just approving the bill, making sure that the bill that you are sent is the amount that you agreed to and hit print. If it’s the only bill you have that week, that’s fine. You start, you’re building the discipline and then on Fridays print the check and then in two weeks it’s going to be checks. And in four years it’s going to be hundreds of checks. But you’ve already got the discipline. You’ve you’ve already got the system. You also already have that written down so that when you hire someone else on board, they’re already following the procedures. And there’s there’s a benefit to doing this, not just that you have this discipline, but your vendors also can predictably rely on when they’re going to get paid. So what’s that do? It stops them from calling you and asking you pay your pay your bills on time and just be absolutely certain that you don’t have vendors that are wondering when you’re going to get paid. It’s so easy to avoid.

Matt Tompkins: It’s it’s really it’s automation in in the sense that these this is what I was alluding to at the start of this episode, that there are things you don’t have to reinvent the wheel. You’re going to have to pay bills, you’re going to have to get paid from your customers or clients that are hiring you for your product, buying your product or your your service. And like, we started off with QuickBooks, and I think the reconciling your books and some of those things we might be able to touch on on an a broad view because it can be intimidating. It was for me. Yeah, right. It’s overwhelming. There’s like so many options within QuickBooks and there but there are other services like is one that we use that are very simplified and you can, like you said, you enter the vendor, their information, you enter your customer and their information, you have their bank, whatever, however you’re doing, your ACH payments or credit card payments, once it’s set up, you don’t even have to think about it. It’s just that you can set it up to just auto renew once, however often once a month, once every two weeks, whatever it might be.

Jeremy Aspen: Yeah. And then to use another example of receivables, if the a day goes by past the the credit date that you’ve extended to them, they know they’re going to get a call because your procedure is to run every day or every week a a list of all the clients that are overdue by whatever day you determine ten days and you call them, you call them, you don’t send them an email, call them up, let them know that you’re watching it. Find out when they can get it. Have them give you a date of when it’s going to be paid. Make a note in the system. And if they don’t, if you don’t get the check by then you call them up. That happens, say, three times. And if they don’t have it back in you three times, the next step is you just send it to collections. If the client knows that this stuff is going to happen, they’re not trying to balance their cash flow with your you with your money. They just know that this is the way it’s set up. You can be professional. You have to be professional about it, be professional about it, but have a very systematic way of approaching these things because that predictability, that stability and the predictability, the predictability that come from it save tons of time down the road.

Matt Tompkins: And that’s how you’re able to project your future earnings budget to know, are we growing, are we falling behind? Like, are there things can we go to this conference next year or whatever it might be that you want to invest in, like early on, would you say, because I found this to be true not just with the the financials and establishing some of those routines and and automations, the procedures for those things that we have now, but also the how you interact with your your customers and in the sense of not selling them the product, but just the the details on the back end. So having an agreement, having a contract that you can sign, or at least that very clear in an email form, at the very least of here are the expectations for you and for me, because if you don’t and I don’t know if you if you had a moment where you didn’t do that, it’s hard to go back because then you have to basically just start over with that relationship and you lose I don’t know how many months or years, depending on how this may have gone south.

Jeremy Aspen: Yeah, well, so so in a nutshell, here’s what I think kind of has to happen. You have a product or you have a service. That is what you’re bringing to market. So you don’t need to be the best at necessarily at having that. You can. You can sell a commodity, but you have to be the best. You have to have something that brings it kind of has you stand apart with the competition or makes you at least a viable competitor to the people that you hope to be competing against. But there is a lot of other aspects of business, which is where almost all these small businesses fail, and it’s the boring shit. It’s paying the bills, it’s collecting money just to even just stick with the two examples we have there. What you want to do as a business owner is set it up so that shit is so easy that it’s boring. You don’t. To use brainpower on procedures that have literally been in place for thousands of years, like paying bills is not. If you’re if you’re creative paying bills or you’re working hard to pay bills, you’re definitely doing it wrong. It’s a 2000 year old process. Get it down, make it boring. So the time that you save today is something that is time that you can use. Well, you save time today. The things that you’re creating, these procedures that you’re doing right now, what you’re trying to do with those is save next Tuesdays afternoon, next Thursdays afternoon, next. And every time. Well, that’s another thing you’re saving all this time in the future so that you can focus on bringing to the market what you’re good at, not these basic business things. They’re there. Yeah.

Matt Tompkins: It sucks away from your just your general enjoyment for that. You’re supposed to be the things you’re supposed to be enjoying as a business owner, doing what you love. You’re setting your own schedule. Well, I’ve done the same thing and I think it’s it’s common and it’s not it’s not abnormal to say that I this is I hate doing this part of the job. It’s boring. It’s tedious. I just don’t want to do it. So then you wait till the last minute to do it, and then you have to pull in all night or you’re working late. And then the next week comes along and you’re like, Well, yeah, I could like, work ahead. I could do my homework on Friday so I could go out and party Saturday, but I waited until Saturday and now I can’t go out. So just like, take the time. Trust me, I’ve done it wrong and I’m doing it right now. It is so much off of your your shoulder plate. Yeah, it is so stress relieving.

Jeremy Aspen: Break every one of those things down into their smallest component parts that you can dedicate resources like a time to break it down, put it in in its normal, orderly thing, input the bill into the system, code it, approve it, pay it, and then just have it set up so that those things are always done in their sequential, sequential or you know what the next step is. It’s really, really easy. Make that shit boring.

Matt Tompkins: So so the how are you doing it? The the stuff that is boring and maybe it’s exciting. It’s pretty exciting to somebody. I don’t know. Somebody believes processes and procedures are sexy somewhere on in planet on planet Earth. We’re going to have some of those links and resources to how you can find places to do that. In the show notes here today, like I mentioned, QuickBooks Suite process or Process Street make it super easy and convenient, but aside from those like the routines and the automations of the things you’re going to have to do, what are some other areas specifically to the money and not going broke?

Like, that’s one way you don’t go broke. You stay on top of those things. Another way you don’t go broke is figuring out a way to a start your business in the first place and be have income to survive on for you and your family if your business isn’t generating huge profits right in its first year.

Jeremy Aspen: Well, yeah. So there’s a couple of different approaches to this. The approach I’ve always taken is that we’re self funded. We just do everything. Even when we were we so you can bootstrap or you can borrow really. I mean that’s kind of if you break it down to the simplest parts, if you’re bootstrapping, like in our case, my wife worked for 18 months where we didn’t bring any sort of a paycheck on at all.

And then after that we started bringing in a paycheck and then it kind of blew up over the course of years, turned into what it was. There’s another way of doing it, which is to borrow, like to put together a plan that shows potential investors what you’re planning on doing. And and then in those cases, you kind of have to frontload the you have to be able to predict kind of something you said earlier. You have to know what it is that’s coming in the future so that you can explain it to investors so they write a check and then be able to demonstrate to them that you’re on track. It’s a much more complicated way of running a business,

I think, but it’s also one that has more likelihood of being able to work in the long run. So you give a little bit up. Hours is riskier and just that we weren’t willing to take on debt or or bring on new partners. So we don’t have that flexibility of bringing in other people’s cash to keep cash flow, keep people paid and all that stuff. So there’s there’s.

Matt Tompkins: Jerry just spilled his water all over his pants, which I just want to tell people because it was it was very rewarding for me. I don’t know, it was gratifying to see you spilling your usually it’s me spilling on myself or ripping a hole in my pants. You mentioned something like when we were talking kind of before the podcast and it was a eyes glossed over moment for me. So I explain what you were talking about there as far as getting the financials and working, working ahead versus you put it in better terms than I did.

Jeremy Aspen: Okay.

Matt Tompkins: Oh, and simplify for somebody.

Jeremy Aspen: Okay. So okay. All right.

Matt Tompkins: Who passed basic college math.

Jeremy Aspen: Okay. Well. So compound interest is something like Einstein thought it was one of the most amazing things in the world. And it’s because, like with your your your house payment, you know, you’re paying all this interest upfront. Compound interest is basically you have you borrow a $100 and then you’re going to pay $1 a year for it, right. To borrow. And so but let’s say you don’t pay it.

So then the next year you’re going to have to pay interest on $101. Right. And so it keeps compounding and it can it can work for you or it can work against you. But if you can get compound interest, work in your favor like banks do, it’s like it’s like a hurricane in a good way and that I should that bad example. Sensors are good. What compound interest is dangerous in a lot of ways, but it’s also an instrument that you can use to really make yourself rich or like.

Matt Tompkins: With the funding idea which you have if you’re looking to sell, fund or get funding through your business plan from a lender or a combination of the two, I think in both cases you want to end up in a situation where in a relatively short amount of time you’re not still paying these huge payments or interest on things and you’ve kind of figured out like an interesting creative way to do that when you started with.

Jeremy Aspen: Starr Yeah. So there’s yeah, compound interest. If it’s something that you’re not really familiar with, maybe this is tip number one. Better learn that one. Yeah, like do a Google search. Basically.

Matt Tompkins: I throw it around at dinner parties and just dig it. Yeah.

Jeremy Aspen: People, especially the girl, the girls. Oh, man. Oh, my God. So. But what you want to do in business, just like how compound interest can work against you or work for you, you need to put your energies in at the front end. You need to take a little bit of time every single week to work on making your procedures tighter and easier and more boring, because the sooner you can get into that flow, that boringness, the sooner that you can spend the extra time doing work that really changes. It sets you apart.

Matt Tompkins: Or working on the business.

Jeremy Aspen: Growing, work on your business, work on the next one. Like get these things, prioritize low hanging fruit first, get the payables thing down pat and then go on to the receivables. Just get those things knocked out because every part of your week, especially when you’re starting, most importantly, when you’re starting your business, you have to set time aside to make the future better, not just to push out your product.

That’s that’s going to make that’s going to keep you in a position where you are not able to fund anything new, anything exciting. Keep up on technology. Make sure you do that stuff at the front end so that in the future you can reap the rewards of that extra time and more efficient systems to make you more money.

Matt Tompkins: I feel like that’s really the general consensus here. As far as a major takeaway from this episode is you have to put in the time and the work and you can do it in increments like set aside 30 minutes a day to work on those processes and procedures, set aside 30 minutes a day to get your financials in order. And this may be years before you even start the business, you know, start putting money.

Jeremy Aspen: Yeah, I think that’s right. Yeah.

Matt Tompkins: Start putting away money. Like now for a business you want to open later. I know. In my case it was knowing that this time was going to come. When I wasn’t going to renew my contract, I was going to go just, you know, no net, no safety net.

And you slowly start building up, you know, working on the side and you’re a freelancer and you’re doing this gig economy work so that you can roll that into what becomes your business. And so I think putting the work in on the front end, I know it’s it’s not like the the sexy fun thing to do.

Jeremy Aspen: Certainly not, you.

Matt Tompkins: Know, but that is really the key to not going out of business in your first year, not just not going out of business, but having a successful profitable business in the long haul.

Jeremy Aspen: Yeah, it’s kind of sounding repetitive. You have got to spend your time working on the stuff that every business has. It’s predictable. You’re going to pay bills, you’re going to collect. You just get those basic things figured out ahead on how you’re going to operate.

Matt Tompkins: If you look at like the top things, I mentioned how at the beginning of this episode, how, how, how common it is for podcasts, for businesses. Well, podcasts in this case.

Jeremy Aspen: Yeah.

Matt Tompkins: Okay. Go out of business. And it’s really startling when you see that. And I think this is the top reasons they list are usually like management. They it’s, you know, financials, funding, not having the money. But those two things, the main things they mention all really can be solved with one quick solution, and that is doing the work on the front end planning set aside. You know, in fact, Gwen gave me the tip when I said, this is overwhelming. I can’t do all these this process and procedures and then setting your.

Quarterly goals and annual goals. And she said, No, just sit down like do an hour a week where you learn something new. So this hour, this week, I’m going to learn how to reconcile my books and make sure everything matches up in QuickBooks. And then the next week I work on my processes and procedures, and I think that’s a more manageable way to approach it and makes it realistic for some, a business owner like myself who doesn’t want to do it to actually get things done.

Jeremy Aspen: And so if you’re going to give people you mentioned a couple of things that I think. So if you don’t know how to reconcile or the value of reconciling your books, go figure that out. We have consulted for hundreds of management companies and almost none of them do bookkeeping correctly. Not rarely do they actually do reconciliations correctly. And it’s especially when you’re dealing with other people’s money like they are, it’s one of the best things you can do to to weed out confusion in the confusion in the future, and to have an accurate understanding of where your books are and get your stuff reconciled.

Matt Tompkins: And so for somebody who doesn’t know, reconcile your books in a basic terms.

Jeremy Aspen: Reconcile your books is what you’re doing is you’re going to take a bank statement. Well, let’s do this. We’ll start the other way. You have software that you’re inputting charges, transactions into.

Matt Tompkins: Like QuickBooks.

Jeremy Aspen: Or like QuickBooks. And then what you want to do is like that universe that you’re living inside of for financials, you want to make absolutely sure that it is reconciled or is exactly the same in as close to real time as possible. As to what the bank is telling you happened. Same with credit cards. You’ve got to keep an accurate recording of what you’re doing, and then you’ve got to make sure that the banks are are on are on the same page as you. That’s a huge because sometimes you’ll duplicate a transaction or you’ll forget to put one in something like that and as close to real time as possible, make sure they are in there. So this one’s here, you click it in your books is done and, and, and it just gets rid of a lot of confusion.

Matt Tompkins: And you reconcile books daily, right? I do, yeah.

Jeremy Aspen: So every single.

Matt Tompkins: Day. And that allows you to have pretty accurate projections too.

Jeremy Aspen: I know exactly. So yeah I mean every single and we just did like last week, $1.2 million of invoices and our books are all done. I know exactly what our profitability is for months to date. And that’s the sort of stuff that you can do. You can project in the future better. Reconciliation is one of them. Get that one figured out. Nobody does it. And you got to and you can make it boring. Like how we do it is every day.

You can do it every Tuesday or Thursday, but do do it. Just set that time aside for your administrative stuff a certain time of the week. Get it knocked out and it’ll it’ll also help you understand like did the client actually pay? What if there’s a deposit in there that you didn’t register? Well, maybe they did pay, maybe they used ill pay.

Matt Tompkins: And you’d be surprised how that happens. Even with a good system in place, things can happen. They will happen. I mean, and that’s what I did when I, I said, well, I haven’t really, because bookkeeping is it’s I think most business owners is probably not their number one skill or forte that they can just jump in and be as you know as or sure as proficient as you are in that in that area.

And it was it was reconciling the books say wait a minute, why does this is why things aren’t looking right? You can resolve it. You can make a plan. And I’m glad that I am doing that because it is easier than you think to get off track. It is easier than you think to not do these things like, you know, setting money aside for taxes, not blowing your your money on a Caribbean cruise or whatever it might be. Real quick, because I know we got just just a couple of minutes here, but what would you tell somebody who has done some or many of these things wrong? It’s they’re still in business. How do they right the ship?

Jeremy Aspen: The the very first thing you do after you hear about this is this go make your basic business procedures boring and you’ll spend a lot of time doing it. But it’s it’s not insurmountable and it’s got to be done because those boring tasks are the one that you’re going to end up hiring people for. And here’s another thing. If you’re if they’re boring tasks like you’ve already got it pretty automated, you also get to pay people a little bit less money for doing work that doesn’t require as much thought.

You instead of hiring an accountant or a CPA, you can hire a bookkeeper because the procedure takes care of the details about how you’re going to report your income to the IRS because you put it in the system correctly. The other one is valuing value, valuing your time or your product correctly. A lot of times at the beginning you’re going to have pressure to try to compete and.

Matt Tompkins: Try to yes, you’ll say yes, you’re.

Jeremy Aspen: Going to say yes to stuff you don’t think is right. Stop it, don’t feel it, recognize it. Don’t let yourself go down that track, because there are also going to be the clients you’re probably not that are probably not going to pay you.

Matt Tompkins: And they’re going to be the most difficult.

Jeremy Aspen: Oh, and they’re definitely going to be the most typical. They’re going to have the best excuses. They’re going to see. I sent the check. You didn’t reconcile your books, so then you got to run through your entire statement, figure stuff out. The other one is reputation. Don’t lie once ever.

I run into it all the time where people kind of make these white little lies and it just and people know it and it digs into the reputation and you can’t get out of that. Don’t lie once.

Matt Tompkins: Ever. One final tip, Jeremy Aspen, I appreciate the insight here today and I expect you to do our books before you leave and reconcile everything.

Jeremy Aspen: You just got.

Matt Tompkins: Done. Yeah. Oh, you did? Okay, John. It’s all automated. See how.

Jeremy Aspen: He.

Matt Tompkins: Did it while we were doing this episode? No one thing that I think really helps, generally speaking, that I have learned in and just kind of my evolution here, you know, of what little there is, some would tell you. But what I’ve learned is to separate yourself from the company. And all these things here are company decisions. They’re not personal decisions.

Jeremy Aspen: Yeah, that’s.

Matt Tompkins: Good. You’re not making a company decision that you have to say no to the project or you have to have to say, Hey, client XYZ, you’re you’re cut off because of this. It’s a company decision. It’s the personal side that we get confused. It’s that emotional side. We want to make people happy.

We want to overdeliver. But you have to separate yourself from that same thing that goes with the basics of the reconciling your books, the financials, the routines, the processes and procedures. Those are company things that the company needs. You don’t personally need them.

That’s why they’re boring to us. But keep that in mind. There is a separation when you do that simple thing. Just the thought experiment just kind of separate yourself. It makes things so much easier to do and that I would recommend highly for people. On a philosophical note, I guess.

Jeremy Aspen: Well, in what you’re doing in that case is like in your case, the cameras don’t turn on until we get whatever 50% of the that’s it. And then it’s their decision whether they want the cameras on.

Matt Tompkins: Yeah. And being clear up front. So I mean up.

Jeremy Aspen: Front, a lot.

Matt Tompkins: Of very helpful tips here today. We’re going to put a bunch of resources for you in the show notes from websites. You can go, like I mentioned earlier, to get your process of procedures, Keep it nice and simple and it’s easy to use. You don’t have to think about it ever again.

Set up your billing. You know, DocuSign is great for digitally signing agreements and contracts. Listen, if I can do these things, anybody can do these things.

Jeremy Aspen: I’ve known Matt a long time. There’s a lot truth to that.

Matt Tompkins: Jeremy Aspin with anarchism, also formerly with with Star, founded to two companies on the rise. I’m glad. I’m glad you’re finally on the rise. It’s good. I mean.

Jeremy Aspen: Yeah, yeah, it’s getting embarrassing.

Matt Tompkins: I know the.

Jeremy Aspen: Success was just tantalizingly or, uh. Yeah, the. And you, I mean, don’t appreciate what you’ve done. I mean, in the last couple of years, you’ve really turned this thing around. You’ve got a real. I mean, this. Look at this place. It’s really cool. You’re doing a lot of the right stuff.

You’re. I know you’re beating yourself up for doing a lot of the wrong stuff. You’re doing a lot of the right stuff, though, as evidenced by the fact that you’re here.

Matt Tompkins: We’re sitting here today. Yeah. So I appreciate I appreciate that. And yeah, it’s hard to do as the.

Jeremy Aspen: Oh yeah.

Matt Tompkins: Sorry to say.

Jeremy Aspen: Critical as hell. Yeah.

Matt Tompkins: You’ll only focus on the things you did wrong or the.

Jeremy Aspen: Nature of the being in charge is that you have a very filtered list of crap.

Matt Tompkins: That is the what do they call that? The the imposter syndrome.

Jeremy Aspen: Yeah, right. Yeah.

Matt Tompkins: And that’s for a future episode. It could be a whole episode or a whole podcast in and of itself. But some helpful stuff here for you today. Jeremy Aspen, thanks so much for joining us.

Jeremy Aspen: Thanks for having me.

Matt Tompkins: Thanks once again for joining us here today on the Omaha podcast. Hit that subscribe button. Follow us on Apple, Spotify. Wherever you’re listening to the podcast, we have more episodes on the way and we want to hear from you. What more do you want from the Omaha podcast or other topics that we haven’t covered yet that you’d like to hear right here on the show?

You can reach me to Brothers Creative at Hit the subscribe button though, so you never miss an episode and we’ll see you next time. Hot Pockets. Where? Omaha. Successful entrepreneurs help your business grow.