680: 4 Challenges of Hyper-Growth w/ Anupam Satyasheel

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

In this episode we talk to Anupam Satyasheel, Founder and Chief Enterprise Officer of Occams Advisory.

Click here to connect with this guest on LinkedIn.

... to pay attention to your brand? Start a podcast and invite your ideal clients to be guests on your show. Learn more at sweet fish Mediacom. You're listening to the be tob growth show, a podcast dedicated to helping be to be executives achieve explosive growth. Whether you're looking for techniques and strategies or tools and resources, you've come to the right place. I'm James Carberry and I'm Jonathan Green. Let's get into the show. Welcome back to the B tob growth show. This episode is sponsored by Directive Consulting, the B Tob Search Marketing Agency. We're here today with a new bom, Suttia Shill, a new them, is the founder in chief enterprise officer at AKAM's advisory, a new them. Welcome the show. Thank you. It's it pleasure to be here. I'm so excited to connect with you. You know I had the reschedule on you last time and you're kind enough to sort of be very flexible and I definitely wanted to get you on the show because today we're going to be talking about the challenges of hyper growth and you're definitely the person to be coming on and talking about this today. I'm going to let you, of course, explain to the to our listeners, why that is, but also in the meantime, maybe you can tell us a little about what you and the OKAM's advisory team are up to. Ilcome to the advice. We to just give a fifteen second background. Started off as a NACH financial services business, focusing more on investment banking and risk advisor and the workway back in two thousand and eleven twelve, and since then we have diversified quite a bit into other things. So our hyper growth comes from, I guess, the having a lot of clients. We're happy with us, but be also because we have diversified the services we offered to them. So the team has been occupied lead to half of last year and this year on focusing how to get us from being a one upcomes advisory. Even you go to the website we see lots of services. They're to breaking this down into nuclear businesses and now we have comes money, we have automes wealth alcomes capitalist coming on board, which will be in this stal banking business. So this entire process of reconfiguring the company, rebranding it, and could obviously off to keep the lights on, keep Serbinely distant customers. That's what people are really obsessed with right now. Yeah, well, and certainly congratulations its congratulations on your growth. I mean, you know, the the top of today is the challenges of hyper growth, which sounds like a great problem to have, and you know we're growing so incredibly that it's causing problems and thinking about then. Okay, then how do we deal with it? So we've actually got four things and open that we're going to be time by the day, Challenges of hypergrowth, and we're going to start off with this idea of being willing to accept imperfection, so a new them. Tell us a little about what you mean by that. So my background is in finance. I got, Mam bea in finance n commence froment by you. I was a banker after that. All that should make it easy to believe that I'm a guy who pretty much seeks sort of quality and perfection, preferably in all that we they shall do, our clients and, yeah, everything that we do. However, as we have grown, you really cannot but have to deal with accepting something which I call like you know now, is better than perfect, which I think is also a tag language facebook uses a lot. Interesting that it becomes a POW because of them now, but you know, I'll take a b minus right now, then an a plus six days later, because in six days a client might go it. So that's when we have time sensitive projects, obviously quality takes the back seat and otherwise do not everybody across the organization have seen personal standards. So if people are making a spelling mistake here and there, even though they all have spell check requirements, or they have like not the perfectly formatted letter going out to a client, we start accepting those things by and by.

I really just hope that this isn't become a slippery slope against which the standards keeps lighting. So there's a delicate balance. You don't want to stop everything which is less than perfect, but you absolutely want to make sure that people understand that there is only so much that you can compromise with. So it's overall delicate balancing, like hype of group overall is, or if somebody can see running business overall is. But that's what I'm talking about that you know you have to except that, otherwise you will never get anywhere in running a business. Would you play a business between moving the offense? Yeah, well, and I think that especially the the founders and the business owners who are tuning in are that that's something that's really going to resonate with them, because they probably got into becoming a founder or business owner because they had a particular vision, they had a way that they they wanted to execute and they went for it. And I think sometimes, you know, we've, maybe we may have all seen this at some point, that just relinquishing that level of control can be difficult. But I'm also really glad that you had mentioned this idea of it being a delicate balance, that, yes, of course you want to be able to put things out regularly, consistently effectively, but you also don't want to compromise too much in the way of of the actual value. Is there a scale by which that you personally judge something that is okay, this is better to be done now, and we can accept slightly lesser quality, versus this we've gone too far, this is this is too sloppy, this is too messy. You know, we can spend an extra couple of days I mean is there? Is there some way that you personally measure something like that? Absolutely so it's incredible that the eight hundred and twenty rule comes in handy here as well. On average of twenty percent things in the business which you absolutely want to be a plus quality, like if I'm sending a client deck, if I'm sending out an important announcement, we absolutely want to make sure that this is all holly revised. Routine operations, routine things, something which is not that visible to everyone. And then many of the businesses one can and should be willing to accept, because that is very hard to enforce on everyone. So, just as an example stories, there's not much better. We had deal one pager for people who are not from banking industry, like typically, when you're trying to market a deal, you typically send out a one page in the beginning with no name, saying this is what the company is, the management is, the deal is, this is what the investors is playing for. And at forty five last and when I was going through my emails to realize that there was one supposed to go this morning at nine am and the final draft was not something which was comfortable with. I could not stay up for ABC reasons. But I got up at four am and spend two hours doing that one page and six o'clock I shot that out before my four year old and the two year old got up. So these other kind of things you have to deal with, like if I thought this was something which is an internal memo and I can deal with something which is six hundred ten, it's okay, but a deal page going to potential investors having a name on it, that will not fly. So you have no way. You really cannot accept it and where you possibly can, let flight. Yeah, and as that's also something that you sort of also empower your team to make those similar judgments, or is that something where you know it's more like you need to have the final say a moment? The company is evolved far more than just being a one man show. So we have a clear divisions, a pretty flat hierarchy. We have analysts, associates in a VPS, what we call the doors, and then we have got the weepies, as these and managing directors would do you call the leaders. So the leadership team, each of them have the approval all the times to take a call on what is good enough and what is not good enough in client facing rules. That moves little further up. Only escapees can take...

...the decision. We peace cannot, but otherwise everybody can draw the line as to where the OCD has to end and the exigency of the moment has to be accepted. Well, and I like the fact that so you've sort of mentioned that level of delegation. You've mentioned some of the the talent, obviously that you have it at Akham's advisory. Because the second point that we wanted to talk about was an idea of retaining talent and retaining talent during these periods of hypergrowth. What does that look like? This a twofold challenge. As you grew rapidly, you have too had many people, as everybody gets over staff very quickly. I meant our staff. Isn't that they have too many things to do now. The other part, obviously, is that when you get these people hired, you also want to retain the APLUS trand would you get, and I mean you want to return everyone you hire, but borrying some rotten tomatoes. So in terms of getting the top talent, it becomes tougher because you only have so much time to fill slot and if the team is completely cripple because they're understaff, then you obviously have to have somebody super quickly. That's one part problem. The other part also is that even the people who are good, many of them are not in large shops because they want some kind of work life balance and when we have too much work on them, then they might want to go to a bigger brand, either for some change in their lifestyle or for better pay. We really can't compete with the government, Saxo Mackenzie for the pay, even though the kind of work we try to do is at least not expectation of the same standards or similar standards. So from that point of view, getting them in and keeping them engaged and excited is a huge challenge. If you're trying to put the systems and incentives. Like every we try to add one benefit. We give lots of things which people should value, like we give ten holidays in a year. We give at least three weeks of pay time off on top of those ten days, and we also do provide twice he a review for employees, promotion and Con Change. So people here they get the time, they get the benefits, they get the appreciation that we actually are looking at their work with it closely, but even then it's constant challenge to get and we didn't talk talent. Yeah, absolutely, I mean, and that's that's going to be sort of a evergreen problem, if you will. I mean I will continue to be something, of course, that you have to you focus on and adapt with your level of growth. So that makes a lot of sense. Another problem that I think, of course, a lot of people experiencing a level of hypergrowth are going to see is this idea of, you know, cash flow. What do they do and what has been your experience? So luckily, we have been in a business which is out cash pretty quickly. So we started off a lot of consulting assignments. That's what the banks and Riscouvante the businesses do, so they could go. They got beat in a predictable fashion. As we have got further and further entrenched into lower middle market, which is our focus, and dealt with many companies who have their own cash for challenges. For ABC reasons, our collections obviously our slower than our biddles are and in our business we really don't had too many contractors or have other company provider stempts staff. So they typically are double two employees who have we paid very promptly, and fifteen, the last two of the month. So it's so challenge which we have dealt with pretty well because we have grown so well. But, as the word happy growth stage, when you go too rapidly, the gap between the revenue realization and the bill keeps increasing in terms of timelines from like, you know, maybe I want pedal to three or five pills, and that's where we have had to rely on my putting in more of my own money or even surrendering the For one k.

...year and a half ago I had a pretty big balance and that broke everything out of the ten percent hit and put all the money in the business. I said, I am betting that this is this struck will do better than the facebook in the apple which I was invested in. I mean they have been very well. So there was a bit of a person set back in terms of a diamond planning and things like that. I mean, met forty is not necessarily get when your old guy, who can take those may risks, or should take the risk? Also trying to balance all aspects of like like being a parent and husband. Obviously you have to think of ham the security as well, but I didn't have any choices of that time, so I did that and since then we obviously have benefited from a very generous create lines, from create card companies and banks. So we continue to do fine. We don't have any origins need to go seek investors or things like that. But yeah, it's a problem which ultimately stops at the founder or founders. So you can't escape it as long as you're growing rapidly, unless you create some kind of cash cow, which we are trying to create. But be up. Yeah, yeah, then that's no longer a problem. So that's that's interesting is that you know when it when, at the end of the day, it kind of it comes down to the owner, the founder, to you know, are you saying it comes down to that this person to create a solution, surround him or herself with with the right kinds of people that will help him create a solution? Or, you know, even even if it's making that hard call of you know, cash flow is a huge problem. There is no solution. You know, it's time to throw in the towel. I mean, what what should be the main takeaway for our listeners? I would say that being an entrepreneur is not for the faint of heart. We all know that. We'd know that about fifty percent of this country is help employed, but just about five percent of the world population is actually running a business. Many of them are people who are like no, they just work by themselves. In this way, they called Sultan blood. They don't have a team, that don't have a business object to what evaluation truget, which it's is in terms of how big the business has to be. So those treaty five percent people who actually are leadership rules where they have to worry about the bills for fifty, sixty hundred people, and if their professional CEOS, it's easier because they go to stockholders, I'm sorry, the stockholders, to get the money. If they are entrepreneurs, one of founders, then obviously they have to look in their own pockets. I didn't have a partner to to support to these times. So so far it has been that, when it comes down to it, I have to find some kind of solution, but in in general sense of the word, somebody who really is committed to an objective and seen an opportunity. I would say the should not stop till they actually I've achieved it because either their initial assumption that there is a real business to be built here was wrong, then they have to wait less proven that way, or they have to keep finding cash from their own pockets, from Brittamin account. So that's mom's you know, grandparents, friends, family and the all these rounds side helps, the investors, the banks, who sever gives you money. It's a cost of trying to achieve something which obviously is bigger than one person or a team of people. are trying to create a brand, a business which hopefully solving problem for many people and has a bright future. If that's what you're fighting for, you should not really throw in the towel till you really have tried everything which is possible, and I mean really everything. I've seen people say, I want to been entrepreneur, but I want to go to sleep at en pm every day. As a business, we're trying to hire a CEO, I'm not kidding, is a very high profile person our operations. So we have some people level people offs that they don't have a coo in the US or trying to high one, and he said that, you know what, this is a trench national company and you may be having calls at four am and, you know, like at midnight. Those are things which I can't do. I want at least my sleep time, like an I I'm cranky if I can sleep properly, and I said that. Well, you have sound flits by, but when you want to be in a call but really kind of keeping then to five every date, that's what you want to do. So...

...you would play for this job. So overall, it's not just the money pot also is there's so much blood sweat there, the probably one goes into running a business. It's story time, and this growth story is about e sub, a project management SASS company specifically for subcontractors. Even though they had incredible customer retention, they struggled with growth. Being a niche service, they discovered that there was a little demand expressed for their solutions within the search engines. To take on this challenge, E sub hired directive, consulting the B Tob Search Marketing Agency. After refining targeting, pre qualifying clicks with an add copy and developing custom landing pages, directive was able to increase e subs marketing qualified leads by seventy one percent while decreasing their cost per lead by sixty five percent. I have a hunch that directive can get these kind of results for you too. So head over to directive consultingcom and request a totally free custom proposal. That's directive consultingcom. All right, let's get back in the show. Yeah, I'm it's true, it's it's it's some of those hard questions that you have to ask yourself. You know what, am I willing to sacrifice to you to realize that vision, to realize that dream, and whether or not entrepreneurialship is for you at the end of the day. So that makes a lot of sense. A new from this fourth challenge of hypergrowth is definitely something that all comes advisory deals with. You know, a lot of our listeners are probably also going to deal with to a certain extent, maybe in slightly different ways. But let's talk about than regulations and sort of the challenges that you've seen. So sort of touch a topic more so in in today's Times. So what I would try to stay on the right side of the line as a promoter and operator and owner, whatever you call it. Different business. You want to focus in the business, but we live in an ecosystem in which obviously the regulations and I respect them, but I do feel that to be efficient and effective, regulations should be easy to understand, easy to follow and preferably administered by as few agencies as possible. Unfortunately, in the US we have a very complex fax code. We have lots of regulatory agencies at federal level, at state level, and then there are obviously many other informal agencies like today's social media and, you know, the yelps of the world and the better busines, business bureaus and so and so forth, and I'm all for it. People need to have a place where they can talk about things. But going back to regulation, part us, even the Corp Corporate Law for the matter. We start off as an adjusty corporation. Then we have to go to New York. So you have to get a form certificate as a leg to authority to do business. So we have gone to more than ten states in last five six years. For every state you have to deal with at least four five agencies. So by time you get done with this, just for running pay rolls intense states, you have to deal with fifty is, I mean fifty different agencies. Also didn't done. Then we have licenses, then we have fendra than we have got. So security, I arrest man. It's many cure there's so many departments where you have to provide information and you have to do those things and all works fine if everything is going good, but if either party makes an error, and they happen, is the part of business, then sometimes they get beyond the control of the finance team and they count on the land on my desk or sometimes we have to anticipate them. The other interesting mixes because, being as an international company, we also have to pay a close attention to where we're getting taxed. So that pose is also delicate balancing, like you don't want to be violating the rules in the same time you are doing everything in taxes. So between all that it's a lot of focus or mental energy,...

...which the CEO or Cefo have to pay too regulations to make sure that you don't land up with something and it bothers me most when it's not our mistake, like we had a situation with New York state when they we had our workers complishments in the Yorks, New York state, just to keep it simple, and they over build us by a factor of ten, not like ten percent, but ten times being one hundred to Elevenzero. And we kept telling them in the signal it's not a mistake. So much said. The matter got to collections. It's finally got resolve in our favor, but we had to actually pay seven half thousand dollars just to stay legitimate with them and then get the refund later on. Now let me don't make a big difference in all in the bigger picture, but the mental energy you burn. So those are kind of things. and talking about our if somebody like right now, we had different company, like alcams world is in the print company now in state of Maryland. It's not similar. conser advisory. We are, as a told you in the beginning, we're getting the business in the nuclear businesses. So waiting for unemployment idea for last three months now and we finally got it today. So for four petrows as the paychecks, we're out of compliance because don't have an unemployment idea. We applied on day one. So, as you can see, these things get escalated to be on a certain point that here, this is a problem in brewing. We might get fined or something and we look at exception reports. But you you get the drill of what I'm saying. If we could have not deal with this in a perfect world I would be happy. But if you grow rapidly, ago multiple states, you go multiple countries, we only end or I can imagine what happen if you when fifty countries. So don't really be the lifeclops when the sixty hundred countries. They must be having very crazy regulation challenges. But that's one thing which one vicious. Were Simpler, like there were uniform text colds and flat slaps and not like bill introductions one can take because it also tends to take deductions. So both the kind of things I'm talking about between textports and multiple of glad tredencies and obviously the requirement to stick complan to all of them. It's a challenge. Is definitely challenge for business. Absolutely well, I mean a new of them after I mean, when you put it like that, it actually it sounds like like actual work if you want to have a business, if you want to run a company. So I know it's not always whatever one wants to hear, but very important things to think about is sort of, at the end of the day, where your priorities are, where you want to be spending your your energy and and kind of what you're hoping to achieve. So, speaking of achievements and upon one of the things that we've been asking all of our guests, and I know that this is an important question for you as well. We talked a little, very briefly about it before we start a recording, but we want to know a new them, you know, in terms of in terms of your lea. See what kind of legacy are you hoping to leave behind at the end of the day, whether that is personally, professionally or even a combination of the two. So I have to go a lot into history to talk about this. I as as we all know, these things get defined at the road. I come from a very, I would say average income, may be below average income, family from a role part of India and growing up, because of various reasons, including a sub for financial situation, I could not get any formal schooling for many years. I was about footy years old when they got into school for the first time. Luckily in kindergarten, I went to school in I had some self studying done and I went to school in eighth grade. But obviously, through these years I have seen a lot of kids have the same problem. I mean, I woul lucky enough to get an opportunity and get as far as I have come, but millions and millions of kids world wide don't get a chance to go to school, and let alone go to school. They don't get a chance to eat food and drink water, are things like that. At the same time, we know that with every passing day, the wealth is concentrating in fewer and fewer hands. Now,...

I'm by no means a final socialism will communism. I'm simply stating that that means that people who are controlling those resources, they have a huge responsibility to people who don't have anything on avail little things. So that's the background and the ideology I'm talking about. In terms of what personally means to me is that we as an organization, and I as a person and we as a family try to put an ad muge money into charity as we can. I am a CO founder of a charity as well. It has been in operation for thirteen years. It focuses on social, psychological and educational needs of children. We work in more than seven countries. We have putten motor hunt and kids to school in this last thirteen years. Just last week I got this very it was the best thing I got all years. Just three months will find the year, but besting all year. Some kid in Idaho, he ran K he is in senior program in high school here. I ten can idaho. He raised four and fifty dollars and Send Me Money Order with a handwritten note that I want lots of case to get books to read. They get but you know, chase in my eyes, like somebody actually cares in the place like id who it's not like New York City, about kids in developing world. I was so touched. Wow, we we mass that money, we put that into the trust to get lots of books, with some lots of books to places like one of my hundreds, all these places where we know that gets a problem, Tomica, even closer home, in downtown Baltimore, in Queen's in Harlem. We do all those things. So in terms of legacy, in one word, we have to leave, I mean one sentence, we have to leave a better world behind and the one regard, it's a very big responsibility. If I want to leave a better world behind them, I'm saying I can make a deface to the world and that statement gives us chance to actually make a difference, whether it's in term of one break in the better place, a one kid educated, or a better family or bitter hits, whatever it might be. So, personally, for me, before I breath my last I would like to see every kid in this in this world go to school, which obviously is a dream beyond imagination if engage foundation. So I don't know how it's going to happen, but that's what I would actually want the legacy to be, that all the kids in the world go to school. It's hoping breed happens. Well, that's that's an incredibly powerful answer and certainly the you know this. The story paints a very vivid picture and you know and even that's was just just just one of the more most beautiful answers to that question I think we've ever gotten on the show. So we're so honored to have had you on the shows. You have made this connection. You know. I know that. I know that our listeners are going to get a lot out of not only hearing about that story on a personal level, but also the content and the wisden that you shared with us on today's episode. So if anyone out there is interested in connecting with you, they want to find out you know more about today's topic, they want to find out more about Akham's advisory, they want to find out more about your story. What is the best way for them to go about doing that? So we have an email on the website. In Fort upcomes ADVISUCOM. We get lots of in bone queries for employment. For All those things, there's somebody who motors an email, actually more than one person, and the orders to get out to to the right person. The always can get my personal email from the same source. I applied to most of the memos within one week. If not, when I see all Mamis whom mean all my emails, they I mean any ement which I don't know about. I sleep layed it pretty much within one week. So I'll be happy tone see any questions. Well, that's fantastic. I yes, and you know the emails may not be may not be perfect, but you've been willing to accept in perfection you will get it done, which I think it which I think is fantastic. So a new one. Thank you again so much for taking some time out of your schedule. For being here with us on the show. It really was a pleasure getting to interview today. Thank you so much, man. We have to share the opportunity. There are lots of ways to build a community and we've chosen to build the bed...

...to be growth community through this podcast. But because of the way podcasts work, it's really hard to engage with our listeners, and without engagement it's tough to build a great community. So here's what we've decided to do. We're organizing small dinners across the country with our listeners and guests. No sales pitches, no agenda, just great conversations with likeminded people. Will Talk Business, will talk family, will talk goals and dreams, will build friendships. So if you'd like to be a part of a be to be growth dinner in a sitting near you, go to be to be growth dinnerscom. That's be to be growth dinnerscom. Thank you so much for listening. Until next time,.

In-Stream Audio Search

NEW

Search across all episodes within this podcast

Episodes (1800)