Cover image of Breaking Down Your Business | Small Business | Business Owners | Entrepreneurship | Leadership

Breaking Down Your Business | Small Business | Business Owners | Entrepreneurship | Leadership

Brad Farris & Jill Salzman tackle the most complex small business questions of our day. "Why can't I hire competent employees?" "How do I make more money without driving myself nuts?" "How do I take over the world?"They’ll get to the bottom of these mysteries with help from entrepreneurial geniuses, product pushers, brilliant branders and a ragtag team of moguls intent on magnifying profit. The soothsayers of success have arrived, and you don’t want to miss the priceless insights of these prophets of profit. All wrapped up in 60 mins of 41% mediocre business advice and 54% tomfoolery. It's the ultimate business owner podcast, and self-proclaimed the most entertaining business podcast in the world.

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Top 5 numbers to track

What’s In This Episode: Brad: If you're sick and tired, and every time you think about your business it makes you go aah, that is a poor indicator of your business health. Brad: Welcome to Breaking Down Your Business, episode 357. Jill: No, no, no, no. No, no. No. Brad: You can find the show notes to this episode at breakingdownyourbusiness.com/357, beep, boop, bop, beep. Jill: What's happened to you? Don't make me shout it. Nobody's going to know who we are. Oh, gross. Brad: Jill. It's April. We're talking about numbers. So I thought that- Jill: So, that immediately means robot voice. Brad: Yes, exactly. Robot voice for the numbers. Jill: Of course. Totally makes sense.


28 Apr 2020

Rank #1

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Who does what in your business

What’s In This Episode: Business owners wear too many hats. Systems turn the insanity into sanity. They help you (theoretically) to make sure everything gets done on time. "From a business owner's standpoint, what is your job?" - Brad As a business owner, what is it that you do? Business owners have to: sell. No one is going to sell as effectively as the business owner does. recruit and train. You need to be responsible for who's in the business. own the brand. What does the brand mean and is it consistent? do strategy. Where is the business going? Anything that you don't do should be the responsibility of someone else. That's where systems come in. "You don't own it because it's the scariest role to take on." - Jill What are you handing off in your business for someone else to do so that you have room to breathe? And are the materials your team needs easily accessible to them? Brad recommends getting a pack of notecards with one task that's written on each that needs to get done in order for your business to succeed. With your team or by yourself, arrange those cards by skill or tool. Each of the piles you end up with is a job.While you may need to do these tasks yourself, eventually you might be able to outsource to a VA (learn how to hire a VA here). Who takes care of what in your business? Sponsor: If you’re a manager or business owner, chances are you juggle many HR tasks and are trying to keep up with the ever-changing employment laws. HR 101 from ComplyRight is a free online training program that will give you a solid understanding of employment law so you can handle typical workplace issues like a pro. The six courses include General Legal Obligation for Employers, Recruiting and Hiring, Classifying Workers Correctly, Managing Your Employees, Preventing Workplace Harassment and Discipline and Termination. Explore ComplyRight’s free courses at www.complyright.com/courses.


12 Nov 2019

Rank #2

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How Do You Get Your Team on Board with New Ways of Doing Things w/ Brandon Bruce

What’s In This Episode: How do you change things up with your business? Jill's revamping her website. Brad recently changed pricing. Change can be good, but sometimes when you don't think things through all the way, you can be surprised at the details that you miss. Jill has a highly collaborative relationship with her team. Brad pretendsthat he does - he's collaborative-ish - but what works in some areas might not work in others. Since he hasn't asked his employees how they feel about certain changes, he doesn't know what their feedback is. But he feels like because his tactics are working, people are willing to give him the benefit of the doubt.  "Sometimes you've got to break what's working really well in order to turn it into something new." - Brad Brandon Bruce, former rower, and cyclist across 508 miles of Death Valley, now owns a business called Cirrus Insight, which sells sales software to salespeople. Up to this point, they've focused on inside sales but they want to branch out to have more of a field presence in the bigger cities and get more face-to-face time with customers and prospects. So how does he build up a sales force? Brad suggests hiring more inside sales with the expectation that they'll become outside sales. Jill says to run a mini-boot camp and figure out who might be best on the outside and test in multiple cities to figure out what's actually working. "Leading only one way never helps anybody." - Jill How do you get your team on board with new ways of doing things? Do you listen to their feedback?


31 Jul 2018

Rank #3

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Working in your business vs. working on your business

What’s In This Episode: It's a new year! Are you ready to go or are you kind of crawling into 2019 a little bit burnt out? If you're the latter, Brad's got a 5-day email course that he wants you to read, called 5 Days to Get Control of Your Business and Your Life. In it, you'll find a simple exercise to cut down your work hours down immediately, a magic phrase that improves the output of your team and empowers them to solve their own problems, a proven practice to enable you to set boundaries, and a way to start fitting in things that you enjoy. If this is something you're interested in, you'll find it here (https://anchoradvisors.com/control/). Sign up and let Brad know what you think! "Are you paying attention to the bigger picture?" - Jill Are you working in your business vs. working on your business? Now, you hear that everywhere - but in the beginning, it was a reasonable question. And how would you know if you're working in or on? Jill's issue with the question is that it assumes there is a right answer. In Brad's view, he thinks the goal should be that there's nothing that has to get done this week (as in a deadline) that he - as the business owner - is responsible for doing. "When you're in the details, it's hard to have any perspective." - Brad Brad uses Monday mornings to organize, and then by Monday afternoon, he knows what his objectives for the week are. He's not opposed to switching back and forth (from working in your business vs. working on the business) but he cautions against getting stuck on details. As Jill is going through some changes in her business, Brad thinks that's great: we can only make changes as fast as people can absorb it.


15 Jan 2019

Rank #4

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How to get the most from your mastermind group

Jill: Some people do show up to Mastermind wanting to show off how far they've come, how much money they've made, and feel better by putting everyone else down. Brad: Yep. Brad: Welcome to breaking down your business, episode 347. Jill: Welcome, back. Brad: You can find the show notes for this episode, which is a transcript now, at breaking down your business.com/347. Jill: [inaudible 00:00:21] seven. Brad: [inaudible 00:00:24] Brad: I have no idea. Jill: Somebody figure it out and let us know... Brad: Jill, we're talking about accountability this month. Jill: Yes we are. Brad: We all need someone who's excited when we succeed, disappointed when we fail... Jill: Okay. Brad: Who is that for you? Jill: I want to say it's you, Brad.


28 Jan 2020

Rank #5

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When systems go wrong...

What’s In This Episode: Systems are great, we said. You'll love them, we said. ... except when they go wrong. "It's almost always user error." - Brad Sometimes systems can go wrong - especially where automation is concerned, says Jill. Brad has a system with an automation that's connected to a Google form and somehow, he accidentally sent the same email to the same person a couple of times. Sometimes the software changes, but you don't know. The point is - there are a million things that could go wrong. "Be more forgiving of yourself when a system goes awry." - Jill But at the end of the day, isn't maintaining your system less work than not having them at all? Brad thinks so. Plus, it never hurts to audit your systems, especially automated emails: Check that the links still work and that the flow is what you think it is. Ever had a system go wrong?  Sponsor: If you’re a manager or business owner, chances are you juggle many HR tasks and are trying to keep up with the ever-changing employment laws. HR 101 from ComplyRight is a free online training program that will give you a solid understanding of employment law so you can handle typical workplace issues like a pro. The six courses include General Legal Obligation for Employers, Recruiting and Hiring, Classifying Workers Correctly, Managing Your Employees, Preventing Workplace Harassment and Discipline and Termination. Explore ComplyRight’s free courses at www.complyright.com/courses.


26 Nov 2019

Rank #6

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Whats a mastermind and how does it work?

Brad: There are definitely days when I lose a deal and I'm like, I'm never going to work again. No one's ever going to hire me. I just don't need someone to say, "Fred, you had three bad deals in a row." Brad: Welcome to Breaking Down Your Business episode 346. Jill: It really does scare me every time. Every time. Brad: You can find the show notes for this episode at BreakingDownYourBusiness.com/346. Jill: 346. That's a lot of episodes. Brad: I'm Brad from Anchor Advisors. Jill: I'm Jill from The Founding Moms. Brad: Jill, what are we talking about today? Jill: I don't know, but I'm feeling very military today. I don't know why. Brad: This month we've been talking about accountability.


21 Jan 2020

Rank #7

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What's a mastermind group and why would I want one? w/ Tina Dietz

What’s In This Episode: Jill's recently made some changes over at The Founding Moms, going from monthly meetups to weekly masterminds. "I'm not even sure I know what a mastermind group is." - Brad Audio branding and content marketing expert Tina Dietz's company is in a period of rapid expansion and she doesn't know who to hire first. They talk through pain points and trust issues. "I want facilitators and listeners more than problem solvers." - Jill So what is a mastermind, anyway? Usually a small group with an agenda that aims to solve whatever business problems group members have. Jill and Brad talk through masterminds and what the benefit of having peers listen, talk through, and get clarity is. Are you part of a mastermind group? Guest: Find Tina Dietz on LinkedIn. 


14 May 2019

Rank #8

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Too Many Ideas, Not Enough Time

What’s In This Episode: Is being an "idea person" a good thing? Saul has some listener questions. Jill says that being an idea person is always talked about as if it's a real negative thing. But she LOVES IT. Brad has a list of ideas, but finds them hard to choose or sort it out. But Jill says that those sorts of decisions just come with experience.  "If you have lots of ideas, it's not because you're distracted and can't pick one. You just have a good idea!" - Jill Listener question from Sam:"When you're in a rut, what do you do to get yourself out of that rut?" Jill: I go and talk to people; I get motivation from them. Brad: I go out into nature with electronics off. It's like a hard reboot for my brain. Saul's question: "When you have ideas, how do you ensure that they're not forgotten or lost?" Jill:EVERNOTE! Or for those less technologically inclined, just write it down. Brad: I don't feel like I have to capture every idea. "If it's a really good idea, it'll come back." - Brad


14 Aug 2018

Rank #9

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Stages of entrepreneurial success w/ Mel McSherry

What’s In This Episode: Wanna receive Jill or Brad's newsletters? Find Brad's at Anchor Advisors. Find Jill's at Founding Moms. "You can't sell anything to people that they don't already need. " - Brad Mel McSherry calls in to discuss mailing lists: How can she do it authentically without being salesy? Brad says that if Mel has a valuable service, she has to sell it. Jill advises her to continue doing and interacting with people as she already has been, just in an email format, and she'll be able to succeed. But she needs to be aware of the fact that even if people are subscribed, they need to be invested in what she's doing if they're going to get updates about it. So think about what it is that her audience needs? "We need to know what's challenging for us versus what's not." - Jill Brad breaks down the stages of entrepreneurial success: Phase one: startup - try things Phase two: growth - this is where the work is Phase three: stability - your team helps with expansion Where are you in the stages of entrepreneurial success?  Guest: Mel McSherry is an International Business Development Coach and Speaker. She predominantly works with women business owners who are exhausted and overwhelmed by what they think they need to do in order to be successful. She helps them slash their stress by showing them how to prioritize their profits, their time, and themselves correctly so they can create the money, the business, and the life they want, fast! Visit her website.


4 Jun 2019

Rank #10

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Why You Can't Have Just One Price (and what to do instead)

What’s In This Episode: "How much does it cost to work with you?" is a question Brad hears a lot. Jill and Brad discuss this and why you can't have just one price (and what to do instead) on this episode. "I bought a book for $200." - Brad Brad discusses a mysterious book which he purchased for $200. Think that's crazy? Because of it, he made $60K. Is it still crazy, or a great investment? When you give people price options, you'd be surprised at how many will choose the highest option because of the value they get from it. Listening and understanding what the customer needs allows you to create options that actually work for them. And when you create a connection with your customers, it pays off in the long run. "You are taking the time to learn me, to get to know me." - Jill Do you have questions about pricing or do you think Brad is insane? Let us know!  Sponsor: This episode is sponsored by Netblaze, LLC. Do you need help with your digital marketing? If you want to get more customers from the internet but don't know who to trust or what to do, check out Netblaze - a digital CMO for your company. Netblaze watches over your entire online presence, detects any issues you're having, and displays content on how to get rid of those issues fast. Breaking Down Your Business listeners can try it for FREE.


11 Sep 2018

Rank #11

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Finding your tribe.

What’s In This Episode: Ever needed help finding your tribe? What does that even mean, anyway? Is it customers or colleagues? "Your tribe are the people that need that special thing that you have." - Brad It's a common misperception that your tribe - in this instance - is your group of friends. But to find loyal customers, you want to be authentic. Does every brand need a tribe? Not necessarily. If customers are responding to you, what do they have in common? Where do they congregate? That's where you can be your authentic self. It's very rare that your tribe turns out to be people just like you, which Jill was surprised by when she started The Founding Moms, and it took some testing to figure out what worked best. Brad spends a lot of time with trade groups and that's how he finds his tribe. "Go out there and test what you think it might be." - Jill And once you've found them, how do you get them to engage and commit? Jill constantly reaches out and checks in to foster the relationship. Brad looks for hot-button issues that he consistently hears his clients talk about so that he can talk about them passionately and offer solutions to those problems. If you can give a voice to people who are thinking and feeling what you are thinking and feeling, it's a great way to resonate with your tribe. Then, to turn the tables, Saul has some listener questions and some followup on last episode's employee battle betweenJill and Brad.


30 Oct 2018

Rank #12

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What loyalty do I owe to my suppliers? w/ Gavin Baker

What’s In This Episode: Do you ever think to yourself, "I really wish I could talk to Jill or Brad for an hour about MY business?" Now you can! Sometimes you just need a little help, or you have a question to ask that’s been bugging you. You suspect that it’s not really a whole consulting engagement — you just need an hour to talk something overwith someone who understands and can provide perspective. Book an hour with Brad at http://www.anchoradvisors.com/one-hour "Having some real face-to-face time helps build the relationship." - Brad Gavin Baker of Baker Labs calls in. Baker Labs does online marketing for those in the healthcare space. His problem is that his team is remote, and he's trying to figure out a way to bring them together in a way that's more meaningful and has better communication. They use tools like Slack and Zoom to communicate. Brad says maybe they should have a daily check-in on Slack. Or on Zoom, build in some chit-chat to the agenda. Jill suggests leaving Zoom open for a bit to have more of a real-time feel (or using Daily, like she does!) and there's no agenda. You can do the same type of things that they do in an office, like cake for someone's birthday, Brad says - just do it on screen. Or just get together once a year in a physical space, he says. If you think you can't afford it, try to plan it around an event that some of the team members are already going to, says Jill. "You have to do what's best for your business." - Brad Listener Rebecca writes in, "What loyalty do I owe to my suppliers?" Brad suggests that Rebecca goes back to her supplier and tells them that she's more impressed with the other supplier she's found. She's not necessarily doing it for negotiation with her current supplier, and it will be easier if she sticks to facts. Jill and Brad once again delve into the murky area concerning loyalty. Want these show notes sent to your email? Get them every week by signing up for our mailing list here. How do you handle supplier loyalty? 


11 Dec 2018

Rank #13

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Time blocking and batching to get more done w/ Victor Garcia

What’s In This Episode: As business owners, how do you get it all done? "Musicians are not famous for their analytical spreadsheets." - Brad IN-STUDIO (!!!!) guest and trumpet player Victor Garcia stops by and talks about being a musician and with it, being as organized as you can as well as how to figure out time-management (while still taking time for yourself). But how do you put a price on what you offer? Jill and Brad discuss the perils of "exposure" and how to charge what you're worth. "I remember certain things better when I'm constantly interrupted." - Jill Brad frequently gets interrupted, and he loves when he can turn his phone off and not be bothered by anything. How do you manage interruptions and get things done? Jill and Brad talk about all the interruptions and notifications that go along with being in the modern world... and how time batching and blocking to get more done will help. How do you feel about interruptions?  This episode is sponsored by Spoka.com. Spoka Meet is a video conferencing tool perfect for small businesses for those who need to get more done with less. Anywhere you can find an internet or phone connection, you're simply able to meet. When your signal is spotty, Spoka's eco-mode fixes it like magic. You get unlimited meetings, unlimited recordings, and dial-in/dial-out capabilities for 45 countries all for $11.99/month! Try it for free for 30 days at Spoka.com. Guest: Victor Garcia is a musician who is as versatile as he is creative. His trumpet talent heralds his international acclaim. He sings and plays percussion and bass and congas. His songwriting, arrangements, and charts have led him to professorial positions at Roosevelt University, Loyola University and the University of Illinois in Chicago. Visit his websiteor follow him on Instagram.


30 Apr 2019

Rank #14

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How to keep focus on your goals all year long

Brad: Welcome to breaking down your business, episode 345! Can you find the show notes? It's up to breakingdownyourbusiness.com/345. What are you scared of, Jill? Jill: I'm scared to tell you how excited I am because I bumped into a celebrity this week. Brad: Who? What? Jill: I locked eyes with him and yeah, I think we got married in like one glance. Brad: You got married?


14 Jan 2020

Rank #15

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Top 5 mistakes you're making on your website (without us even looking)

What’s In This Episode: Every website has some common problems that need to be addressed for a better customer/user experience. Jill and Brad talk about what those are. "When anyone goes to any website, they don't want to have to figure out what they're doing there." - Jill Questions you need to focus on: What is your CTA? You need one. Where is your contact info? If you have a contact form, make sure it's actually working. How's your messaging? Is it helping potential customers or is it all about you? Does your branding reflect what you're actually like? Don't just slap on a template or copy what someone else is doing. Are you giving visitors a reason to stay? "When people get to your website, what is the feeling that you want them to have?" - Brad Not sure if you're making some of these mistakes? Get feedback from another person. How's your website? Hang out with Jill and Brad! Wanna join Jill and Brad for drinks at their FIRST-EVER offline event? Meet them September 13 at Park & Field in Chicago to get your shouting on. RSVP here.


20 Aug 2019

Rank #16

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How can we sell right now?

What’s In This Episode: Brad: Welcome to Breaking Down Your Business episode [inaudible 00:00:04] and we're back. You can find the show notes for this episode at breakingdownyourbusiness.com/359. Jill: Yes. Brad: I am Brad Farris from Anchor Advisors. Jill: You're so shouty today. I'm Jill from the Founding Moms. Brad: I'm always shouty, Jill. Jill: Are you though? Brad: I am. Jill: I didn't know if it'd be different. I didn't know if it'd be different. Brad: Today we're going to talk about how to sell during a pandemic.


21 Apr 2020

Rank #17

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Paid Traffic vs. "Free" | w/ Alyssa Westring

What’s In This Episode: Brad: Welcome to Breaking Down Your Business, episode 352. You can find the show notes for this episode at breakingdownyourbusiness.com/352. Jill: I haven't complained about the volume in a long time. Brad: But when you do complain and then I do it softly, you complain about that too. Jill: Yes. Brad: So there's just no way to make you happy. Jill: That's correct.


10 Mar 2020

Rank #18

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Dealing with your worst employee

What’s In This Episode: Brad's got an employee problem. He's got a great guy, company wouldn't be what it is without him, but there are some performance issues. He's late on assignments... basically, he's the worst. Also, Brad is talking about himself. "The type of people who become business owners are not very good at getting things done." - Brad Brad's gotta handle some things on his own. He hired employees to help him, but he still doesn't get all the things he needs to get done in a timely manner. Jill wants to know why he has to finish one task to move onto another. Maybe, she suggests, that's not how he works. They talk about what it means to be the boss, how employers are generally bad employees (or not), and how maybe he should fire himself from the tasks he's not doing. "I guess that's how the Kardashians are famous." - Jill Producer Saul turns the tables and asks about publicity. Is there such a thing as bad publicity in podcasting? Brad thinks there's such a thing as bad press, but people who hate you aren't part of that. Jill wonders if a review like that deters someone from listening. Saul says, if anything, it might make someone more interested. How do you respond to dealing with your worst employee?


12 Mar 2019

Rank #19

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Why You Can't Fix Your Team...

What’s In This Episode: Have you ever hired someone that wasn't so great? Jill and Brad talk about the reason why you can't fix your team. "You need to be more specific. You have to give measurements. You have to talk about what you're willing to tolerate and what you're not." - Brad Business owners always want to task Brad with fixing their team. Maybe they thought they've hired the wrong people, or that those people are too inexperienced or incompetent. But Brad thinks that maybe it's not all those employees who are at fault. After all, the boss is the one who's leading and managing. The person in charge is the one who should be setting up systems. But the team that you have is fully curated by you. If you need something to change, start by looking in the mirror, he says. And if you don't know how to build the systems that will help your team, you can always hire someone to help you do that. "You are an expert because you run your business." - Jill Saul asks listener questions. Q: "How do you convince people that you are an expert?" Brad:Telling people you're an expert makes them think you're not. So instead of telling people, we have to show them - ideally, by showing that you understand how to solve a real problem. Jill:You can show people all the time, but you have to also convince yourself. You have to tell yourself, "I'm an expert." Q: "What are some habits of yours that have been amplified by tech?" Brad:I used to answer emails right away all the time and I had to change the habit because it was out of control. Social media has amplified our time wasting. But there are certain apps that are so good you don't even notice: 1Password, Zapier... Jill:I've gone through so many apps and I've had a lot of bad systems. But when it comes to my newsletter database, the technology has made my life so simple and easy. Do you have questions about fixing your team? Let us know!


2 Oct 2018

Rank #20