It all started in my early teens when I knew I wanted to own my own business someday. Since then I have been a lifelong student of small business. At first I learned by dabbling in many small ventures then deciding to major in accounting and work in public accounting. About six months after fulfilling the experience requirements and becoming a CPA, I quit my job to buy my first small business. About one year later I realized that I had failed miserably, closed the business, went bankrupt and lost virtually everything I owned including my home and car. That experience is one I would not want to repeat, but I would not trade it for anything in the world. It taught me many things about business but more importantly about myself. I learned that I could lose everything, have my dreams crushed by my own hands, and not only survive but eventually thrive.
Also in my teens I became interested in self-improvement and success. I began a lifelong pursuit of being a better person. I discovered that success was a process not a result. I struggled, strived and persevered for many years to become a successful business owner. Because much of my life was spent struggling and striving, my focus has always been on the long-term future.
My small business experience is extremely broad covering: preparing hundreds of tax returns, starting dozens, owning and operating several, valuing hundreds, helping buy or sell many, and providing accounting services to many. My knowledge of small business comes from a unique combination of academic education, professional and technical expertise, and practical, hands-on experience.
The next chapter in my career is the ongoing process of figuring out how to use my knowledge, experience and expertise to: 1) promote small business ownership as a viable, challenging and fulfilling career choice; 2) educate the public about small business and the vital role it plays; 3) help existing owners get the most from their businesses while running them and when they choose to leave; 4) encourage others to become better people; and 5) envision what the future may hold.