When & Why to Control, Drive Company Value

There are inevitable situations for every business owner when the value of the company becomes a critical issue. Unfortunately, few are prepared to make a compelling case for premium value when the moment arises. Most owners spend their career focusing on revenues and managing operations, naturally assuming that greater sales and profits correspond with a growing valuation. But it does not always happen that way. Value is a complicated concept, and building a compelling case for value takes deliberate positioning of the company. And it takes time. It is too late to affect value if owners wait until the last moment before raising capital or selling.

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Cascading Gratitude

Gratitude: inspires cascades of generosity, and to give gratitude is to be the richer, not the poorer, for the giving. - William J. Jackson, Seven Myths of Philanthropy; Seven Opportunities in Understanding

I came across this quote a while back and my mind and heart are drawn to the implications of deep gratefulness. Recently I was visiting my hometown of Atlanta with my children, and as we were driving home one evening I looked up to find the “Hot Now” sign on at Krispy Kreme doughnuts. I couldn’t resist.

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Reigniting the Joy of Ownership

One of the truly enjoyable parts of our job is working with business owners as they rediscover their passion for their companies. I can’t tell you the number of times we started in an environment that felt like a funeral but ended up instead with a party. In many cases clients were ready to throw in the towel. They’d lost their love for their company. Their real dreams had long faded. And the entrepreneurial adventure had turned to drudgery. But then something begins to change as we help them explore strategies to re-position the company, to grow again and to add significantly to the value of the company. As we kick around ideas, talk of strategy and growth evolves into concrete plans and they begin to rediscover a part of themselves they’d long since buried. A hint of hope, a glimpse of sunlight begins to appear. The entrepreneur is reborn as plans are put into place—plans for restoration, resurrection.

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Dare to DREAM!

This Saturday morning, August 4, something extraordinary is going to take place on the Near Eastside of Indianapolis. The story centers around the Arsenal Tech Football team. Tech has a rich history of victorious seasons, abundant fans, and all the things that come to mind when you think of high school football. But time and circumstances have decayed a once thriving environment. Almost a metaphor for the decline of the Near Eastside, the gorgeous architecture of the stadium has deteriorated and is now in great need of attention.

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Olympic Character

I was reading the other day about the remarkable American athlete, Ashton Eaton who recently broke the world record in the decathlon at the Olympic Trials. It’s a marvelous sport with a great tradition that has given rise to some real American icons – Rafer Johnson, Bruce Jenner, Dan O'Brien....  Eaton hopefully will be another. At the Trials, Eaton dominated, winning seven of the ten events, set two decathlon world records and established two personal bests. I can’t wait for the Summer Olympics and the new Wheaties box to follow.

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