Your timing impacts how others experience you.
Before helping others, you must be aware of your own timing first. For example, timing of your cash flow matters to pay bills, employees, and practically anything with a due date. This understanding of when cash is going in and out can create great or poor relationships.
Once you understand your own timelines, figure out others’ or try to view things from their perspective. If you aren’t looking to help others, that is completely fine, but knowing how your timelines work with theirs is extremely beneficial. I know several people who before forming a business partnership or hiring a key employee like to understand their personal and career visions. If you are building a home service business in Wisconsin, but your partner wants to move away in 3 years that affects how it goes forward.
Communicating your timelines is very important as well. Encourage your employees to do the same as you scale. An example of transparent timelines– I found about an expectation where we had something due the next morning and spent most of the night working to meet the deadline. Since then, project managers have been asked to share via email weekly timelines for things due to vendors, customers and internally.
Timing of delivering to customers, employees, partners, investors, etc. matter. How you treat time reveals how you think about things. Showing up early or on time conveys the partnership matters. Sending emails to employees outside work hours, despite saying “don’t worry about emails outside work hours”, is still implicitly going to cause stress or mental load. Take a bit of extra time and schedule the send for the next morning. Taking a call when you are focused on something else does not put your best foot forward.
When your employee is about to head home, don’t be cryptic about a meeting the next day to discuss something. That poor timing brings added stress to themselves and their families. Be thoughtful of your timing in relation to others.
Timing when to start a business is a notion that people often explore pre and post investment. “Why now?” is often the question you have to answer. My old professor Paul Orlando explores timing in his entrepreneurship classes and his upcoming book. Uber was enabled by 3G and the technology at the time.
It is great to be thoughtful of timing, but do not let timing hold you back from something. Action tends to trump delays caused by overthinking. Timing the market is impossible – find good deals and invest often. If you are a consistent buyer of the S&P 500 for the long term, you’ll reap the rewards far more than those waiting.
Starting today matters more than figuring it out for tomorrow.
What are some good examples of timing that you do for your business and life? Any terrible examples you have seen?
Thanks to Everest Brady for his help, writing, and research in assembling this week’s newsletter.
A.J. Wasserstein published a new paper this week on Ari Santiago and his programmatic acquisition strategy at CompassMSP. It’s a fantastic read on multi-acquisition strategies, due diligence, and post-close integration.
Liquidity is Value (Updated) – Alan Pentz, writer of The SMB MBA, covers the Fed, markets, and more in this excellent piece. You can read the newsletter send here.
Polaroid: The Genius of Edwin Land – David Senra breaks down Polaroid, why Edwin Land was Steve Jobs’ hero, and lessons for running a company. You can listen to the episode with David here.
Trina Spear – Billion Dollar Scrubs – Trina built a billion-dollar public company selling scrubs to healthcare workers and shares so many lessons relating to business in this podcast. You can listen to the episode with Patrick O’Shaughnessy here.
Track Zach Marshall #4: The Services Trap, Firing Customers, Chicken-and-Egg Problems – Zachis currently building a marketplace for private security. 14 months in, he shares lessons and more about his journey building in a fragmented market. Interestingly, he invited Eric Jorgenson to regularly follow up via podcast on how the business is going. You can listen to the episode with Eric here.
Michael Arrieta – Founder of Garden City – Buying & Growing Great Companies with Permanent Capital – Michael buys, grows and holds forever family businesses within his holding company, Garden City. He shares his story, how Garden City buys businesses and adds value, and the permanent capital structure. You can listen to the episode with Chris Powers here.
Nick Gray – Founder of Museum Hack – Profiting From Awesome In-Person Events –Nick crafted an excellent book about hosting events called The 2-Hour Cocktail Party. Nick and Michael cover entrepreneurship, Nick’s background, hosting events, VAs and more. You can listen to the episode with Michael and Nick here.
This Week on Think Like an Owner
My guest on this episode is Adriana Garcia Ceja who recently launched a traditional search fund backed by Footbridge Partners, Pacific Lake, and others with a primary focus on the healthcare industry. Adriana brings a ton of experience to her search, including corporate development at Home Depot and a head of special products role at Applied Concepts, a search fund backed company, during her gap year in her MBA at Harvard.
We talk extensively about lessons learned at Home Depot, including the many mentors she’s had along the way, how to be an entrepreneur in a big company, picking the right search fund model for you, getting hands on experience prior to searching, and how we can encourage more women to become searchers.
This Week in SMB Twitter
Think Like an Owner is sponsored by:
Live Oak Bank – Live Oak Bank is a seasoned SMB lender providing SBA and conventional financing for search funds, independent sponsors, private equity firms, and individuals looking to acquire lower middle market companies. If you are in the process of acquiring a company or thinking about starting a search, contact Lisa Forrest or Heather Endresen directly to start a conversation or go to www.liveoakbank.com/think.
Hood & Strong, LLP – Hood & Strong is a CPA firm with a long history of working with search funds and private equity firms on diligence, assurance, tax services, and more. To learn more about how Hood & Strong can help your search, acquisition, and beyond, please email one of their partners Jerry Zhou at [email protected].
Oberle Risk Strategies– Oberle is the leading specialty insurance brokerage catering to search funds and the broader ETA community, providing complimentary due diligence assessments of the target company’s commercial insurance and Employee benefits programs. If you are under LOI, please reach out to learn more about how Oberle can help with insurance due diligence at oberle-risk.com. Or reach out to the CEO, August Felker, directly at [email protected].