Reverse ABC’s

Whatever the mind can Conceive and Believe, it can Achieve.

Most of us are familiar with one of the great speeches of all time, “I have a dream…” by Martin Luther King. As I listened to the speech, I was reminded of another period of time in our great country, the United States of America.

For eight years, January 20, 2009 – January 20, 2017, we listened to the oratory of another fellow promise great things. Heck, he even had the masses mesmerized by his magnificent dreams.

One Little Word

We can all dream — and we do.

In fact, dreams without action are known as fantasies.

If wishes were horses, beggars would ride.
If turnips were watches, I’d wear one by my side.
If “if’s” and “and’s” were pots and pans,
There’d be no work for tinkers’ hands.

Scottish Proverb

Whatever the mind can Conceive and Believe, it can Achieve.

One little three-letter word “and” stands between dreams and achievement. Fantasies and oratory are easy — dare I say cheap. What is very hard and of great value is Belief.

Count The Times

Out of curiosity, I downloaded the typewritten speech given by Martin Luther King and used Adobe Acrobat Pro DC to recognize the text. Then, I did a “search” for the word believe. — and to my surprise it only appeared three times — in the negative tense. See for yourself. (CLICK)

  • But we refuse to believe that the bank of justice is bankrupt.
  • We refuse to believe that there are insufficient funds in the great vaults…
  • …a Negro in New York believes he has nothing for which to vote.

Only a wish, “…somehow this situation can and will be changed.”

I’m not interested in what someone doesn’t believe. I want to know what they do believe — and that’s missing from a speech to 250,000 people on August 28, 1963. Here in Montana, that’s known as all hat and no cattle.

Anyone can complain about a problem — only a select few can “believe” in a solution. However, those select few offer real hope for the future and inspire change in behaviors. They are the Inspirators. Let’s examine their beliefs.

One More Time

Believe in Splitting Stone

After many blows of the hammer, I wanted to ask, “Why — are we doing this?!”

Yet, I settled for, “When do you think it will split?”

As he always did, my Dad just grinned and answered, “I don’t know. That’s what makes this fun.”

Before beginning anything, Dad always knew the “Why” of producing the intended result. I believe that’s what kept him swinging and believing.

A full measure of belief is necessary to continue in a course of action even in the face of difficulty or with little or no prospect of success.

See You At The Top

See You At The Top ~ I Believe

Another hero of mine, Zig Ziglar, came from humble beginnings and influenced many. As a cookware salesman, he learned and taught, “People buy what they want — not what they need.”

As a twenty-something Entrepreneur, the cassette tapes of Zig Ziglar captured my attention and motivated me to serve the public in ways which, before, were unimaginable.

I was inspired to believe that if a pots and pans peddler from Yazoo City, Mississippi, could achieve his dreams — then, I could, too.

You can have everything in life you want if you will just help enough other people get what they want.

V-8 Power

Belief in a V-8

There’s a story about Henry Ford wanting a V-8 engine for his automobiles. He asked his engineers to make one. After several months, they returned to say it couldn’t be done.

Henry explained why it was important for families to travel in safety, with the increased power of more horses under the hood.

Off the engineers went, to try, again. After many more months and with conviction, they reported that the task was impossible. Henry said firmly, “Boys, you don’t understand. You can either build me a V-8 engine, or I will find someone who can.”

They built Henry his V-8.

Whether you think you can, or think you can’t, you’re right.

Believe and Succeed

The strangest secret is, “We become what we think about.” However, only 5% of the population is thinking — the other 95% are conforming. After the conception of a goal, all we have to do is put forth the effort to create.

Success is the progressive realization of a worthy ideal. Conceiving an idea (dream) is worthless, unless we act on it — with purpose and faith (belief).

What you believe will be done for you.

The Word

Easy, or Hard?

Which is easier to say?
1.) I believe.
2.) I have a dream.

Which is harder to do?
1.) Believe
2.) Dream

I Believe

  • All we do begins with a thought.
  • Service to others is love made visible.
  • We receive in proportion to the way we give.
  • Things work together for the good of those who LOVE.
  • Fascination and Curiosity can overcome resignation and despair.
  • In starting with nothing (but a dream) and building something special.
  • Whatever the mind can Conceive and Believe, it can Achieve.

What do you believe?

Technology

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: (NOVEMBER 27, 2018)
Mr. Kim Foard
SageTalk, LLC
406.855.8384
kimfoard@gmail.com

TECHNOLOGY CONFERENCE

An Event for Dreamers and Doers

Billings, Montana: Kim Foard, CPA attended the 2018 QuickBooks Connect conference in San Jose, CA, November 5 – 7, 2018. More than 5,000 accounting professionals, small business owners, self-employed, and developers came together to learn, be inspired, and connect with each other. This is the fifth year Intuit, the provider of QuickBooks software, has hosted the event.

Benefits of attending include: learning about leading-edge technology, being inspired by thought leaders, expanding a meaningful network of peers, and understanding trends affecting the success of those brave and hardy souls known as the Entrepreneur.
For More: https://quickbooksconnect.com/

Technology enlightens, empowers, and encourages the Entrepreneur to achieve results unimaginable even a decade ago. Cloud computing platforms enhance efforts to implement the 5-Step Success Model:
1) Establish a fair Price
2) Ask for Acceptance
3) Plan the Work
4) Deliver on Promises
5) Enjoy the Celebration.
For More: https://kimfoard.com/purpose/build-something/

About SageTalk, LLC: Far beyond the traditional accounting processes, Kim Foard, CPA leverages 35+ years of education and experience to focus on the Entrepreneur and their desire to build a dynamic future. Specifically, he works with those passionate about their legacy, summarized as, “Start With Nothing (but a Dream) and Build Something Special.”
For More: https://kimfoard.com/

Lucky

Recently, someone frustrated with their life blurted, “You’re so lucky!”

I almost responded with, “Those who work the hardest are the luckiest.”

Instead, I simply replied with, “Yes, but if you only knew my story, you might think differently.” I went on to mention, “You’ve heard the proverbial theory of gathering people around a table to share their problems. After looking around the table, everyone grabs back their own.”

She replied with, “I’m so envious of you. You’ve been in love, got married, had children, and enjoyed success in business. My mother has used you as an example of who I should be.”

That individual was consumed with the drama of their existence and was not interested in my Story. So, I’ll share it with you.

Believing Is Seeing

Yes, that’s a word play on the old expression, “Seeing is believing.” However, our eyes can deceive us — or, maybe, better stated, “We can believe in what isn’t there if deception, or preconception, is involved.”

Magic has taken deception to an art form. “Smoke and Mirrors” is a common phrase to describe the sleight of hand. Even in the realm of professionals, we have lawyers doing the same thing in a courtroom.

Societal propaganda has taken preconception to the realm of fantasy. According to the 24/7 bombardment, the rich and famous are the ideal. The agenda to be a celebrity has trampled on the concept of freedom to choose.

On the other hand, “Believing Is Seeing” encapsulates the worldview of making the best of every situation. Even though there may be no evidence of goodness, every opportunity has seeds necessary for our new learning.

Research

Speaking of evidence, research has documented the skills of lucky people. Richard Wiseman, the Professor of Public Understanding of Psychology at the University of Hertfordshire, in the United Kingdom, discovered four main principles:

  • maximizing chance opportunities
  • listening to your intuition
  • expecting good fortune
  • turning bad luck to good

Strategies employed to increase – by 80% – the happiness and luck of ordinary people are:

  • meditation to enhance intuition
  • relaxation
  • visualizing good fortune
  • talking to at least one new person every week

As the good professor explains, “That’s why lucky people appear to have an uncanny ability to be in the right place at the right time and enjoy more than their fair share of lucky breaks.”

Third Grade

I needed eyeglasses in the third grade to see the chalkboard at the front of the classroom and got them as a sophomore in high school. Texas was funny that way — they wanted me to see the highway when I was taking Driver’s Education.

The reason I can remember the third grade is that was the first time I brought home anything other than A’s on my report cards. I’m pretty sure those two B’s would only have been deserving of a reprimand from my mother. That C, however, was cause for a “Come to Jesus” session, with her.

It was so bad, I, to this day, vividly, remember going into our small bathroom at Big Timber, kneeling down, and asking God for His help. I was going to need it — I couldn’t see the chalkboard, and I didn’t know what to do.

I remember praying for wisdom. Solomon was a hero of mine. I figured if it worked for him, it might work for me. Sure enough — all A’s from that point forward.

Seeds of Opportunity: I learned to listen and discovered the benefit of having a “friend” in a very High Place.

Moving All Over Creation

Those six years of grade school at Big Timber, Montana, was the longest period of time at any one school. Dad worked on ranches owned by Trust Fund Babies. As a result, after he had been used and abused, when he was no longer part of their grand plan, we were asked to leave.

Within a month of starting first grade at Lavina, we were on the move to a ranch at Big Timber, MT. We were there for six years. Then, we began an adventure in the foreign country of East Texas. It was a four-year stint of horizon broadening.

My junior year of high school provided the opportunity to be the new kid on three different playgrounds: Long View, TX; New Underwood, SD; and, Lavina, MT. Since I graduated from high school at Lavina, I can proudly proclaim that I started and finished school there.

Seeds of Opportunity: I learned to be the new kid on a playground and still have friends scattered coast-to-coast.

Cowboy Dreams

All of those years of good grades resulted in a full-ride four-year scholarship to any university in Montana. I turned that down to pursue my dream of being a cowboy.

Fifteen months later, I knew I didn’t have the same love of horses and cows as my dad. Although, those years of living the notion, “Where there’s a will, there’s a way” came in handy. This poor kid had a new dream of going to college.

In the course of managing my fledgling business as a twenty-something entrepreneur, the counsel of an older client friend cut short my whining. He exclaimed, “Kim, your problem is not that you were born poor. Your problem is that you were born with ambition. Many are born poor and stay that way. You want something else.”

Seeds of Opportunity: I learned to never, ever look a gift horse in the mouth and to appreciate the investment to earn an education.

The CPA Exam

Having started work for a CPA firm in the middle of my junior year of college, I thought, “How hard can it be to pass that silly CPA exam? I’m educated and experienced — that ought to be enough.” Wrong!

After two years and four attempts, the victory was mine. So, naturally, I believed those Partners of the CPA firm, for whom I still worked, that they would honor their promise to consider me as a partner. Wrong!

For four years, I had made them lots of money and opened a satellite office. So, in their mind and stated opinion, “Let’s keep the relationship as it is and you can keep on doing what you’ve always done.” Wrong!

My dream had been and was even more vividly clear — I was going to be my own Boss and serve the agricultural community in a better way than they ever imagined.

Seeds of Opportunity: I learned to be a good employee (and a better employer) and the importance of believing in Dreams. 

Husband and Father

For twenty-four years, the Community viewed us as the perfect couple — and then eventually the perfect family. Having “found” a Higher Power in the third-grade, those vows, “Til death do us part” meant something to me.

Good luck? Bad luck? Who knows?” whether love was ever a reciprocal emotion. I had conceived, believed, and achieved a Family unit, so as for my worldview — yes, love was offered to wife and children.

Added to the mix of responsibilities during this season of life was the role of “Good Son” providing a retirement for parents, who because of fate and hate (of savings) found themselves without the support of the Cult.

Seeds of Opportunity: I learned to give without expecting anything in return and developed empathy for those abused by narcissists.

Comfortable Rut

Contrary to the Country song, it is possible to have too much of a good thing. Hard work and “good luck” found me comfortable in a rut — which, by the way, the definition is: a grave with the ends kicked out.

I’ve always believed we travel through life on the two legs of Family and Work. Family gives purpose to our Work — Work provides opportunities for our Family.

After the divorce, one leg was crippled — so, I hopped… and hopped, for thirteen years, until my birthday, October 26, 2015. I was sixty years old and burned out — sick to death of Tax Returns and third-generation Juniors.

For 35+ years, I had helped Grandpa build his little empire, which he turned over to Dad (my generation) to maintain (work of a janitor), which then showed up on a silver platter for little third-generation Junior to waste.

Junior was born on third-base and will lie to convince you that he hit a home run. Arrogance and ignorance are a volatile mixture — when thrown in the face of education and experience.

Seeds of Opportunity: I learned what doesn’t kill us makes us stronger and giving IT all away provides a path to true freedom.

One Lucky Guy

So, she’s absolutely right — I am one lucky guy. My journey is not much different than your own, or hers. The only possible difference is I have chosen to make the best of whatever the situation.

Although trained in probabilities as a CPA, my mind is open to the possibilities of good fortune — Seeds of Opportunity.

Must Be A 10

10 Things to Have in an Executive Business Coach

I’ll share the website of another Coaching Enterprise — because, I want YOU to make the comparison. Y’all know I’m competitive — so, I’m hoping YOU can mark all 10 in my favor.

If not, give me a call — M 406.855.8384.

Highlights from the Article

  1. Good business coaches have a proven record that they will be eager to share with you.
  2. A great business coach has experience both as a business owner and as a business coach.
  3. You’ll want to find a business coach that is relevant and specific — to your chosen area of growth.
  4. Business coaching requires custom strategies. Pass on any coach that treats their business like a coaching mill.
  5. A great business coach will challenge you outside of your comfort zone and make you look at challenges in new ways.
  6. Seek out a business coach that is well-connected, so in turn, you become equally well-connected.
  7. Your business coach should be highly motivated and focused on YOU achieving your goals and aspirations.
  8. Your mentor should love teaching because it means giving back, and it should be obvious in their approach to coaching.
  9. You don’t have to be best friends with your business coach, but you should have a friendly rapport.
  10. The most critical piece — there must be a process to be followed, a regimen. In other words, a committed and disciplined approach to Success.

Highlights from my Life

  1. Beginning in December 1981 through October 2015 this was my Mission Statement, “We Are Committed To Excellence In Providing Accounting and Financial Services To Our Friends Who Pursue Success.” For those 34 years, hundreds of Clients can attest that, together, we built little empires.
  2. Now, the Mission Statement is, “My mission is to guide YOU to personal and business success, according to the vision that YOU establish for us.”
  3. I’m a Builder — so, if YOU want to Build Something Special, I can help with the foundation, deck, framing, trusses, roofing, windows, doors, sheetrock, tape, texture, and trim (figuratively speaking).
  4. There’s only one of YOU — so, by default, your learning will be according to your style and timing. Since communication is what the listener does, I will actively listen to understand what YOU want and need of me.
  5. If two people agree on everything all of the time, one of them is unnecessary. We will challenge each other and experience mutually rewarding individual growth.
  6. Thirty-five plus years of Building Dynamic Relationships by using the Three-E Formula of Enlighten, Empower, and Encourage provides plenty of opportunities for YOU to make connections with my Friends.
  7. YOU are the reason for my existence. I’m simply a chunk of conduit for the goodness from above, to flow through me, for the benefit of YOU.
  8. Coach John Wooden was a Teacher before he was a Coach. Later in life — after many National Championships — he simply wanted to be known as a Teacher. I share that Story with you — because, that’s the legacy I seek.
  9. Guaranteed there will be rapport — because only friends do business with each other. I have discovered, over a period of 35+ years serving the public, that half of the world will love us — the other half, not so much.
  10. That ‘other half’ (in Number 9, above) usually left the friendship because they grew tired of the consistent, disciplined, determination for us to grow and move forward toward our goals.

That’s my Story — and, I’m sticking to it.

Now, the Choice is yours — stay stuck in a rut (which by definition is: a grave with the ends kicked out) or move forward into a world of your dreams.

Remember, I’m a Builder.

We can do this, together.

Better Business Plan

Blueprint For Success

A seasoned carpenter shared this secret to success: “You must begin — and, begin again.”

For the dreamers among us, the question is: “Where do I begin?”

The purpose of this article is to provide the parameters for a quick analysis of an idea to determine its possibility, and probability, of actionable success. As with any legitimate construction project, we build it on paper, first.

This is our blueprint.

Considerations

Owner Compensation
The concept of beginning here is novel for a Business Plan. Yet, this number will keep our attitude right and provide the Retained Earnings for business expansion. Success principle — Begin with the End in Mind.

Debt Service
Unless adequate funds are available for startup, the early years will include a Banker for a partner. The goal is to buy them out quickly to retain their share of profits, which are paid by our business as Interest.

Taxes
Self-employment, Federal income, and State income taxes must be paid timely. Because of severe penalties (plus interest) for non-compliance, governmental entities are terrible sources of financing.

Overhead
This is the delivery system for providing value to the marketplace. It is everything from the storefront brick-and-mortar (or online presence) to all indirect expenses. It is the price we pay to have a Company.

Direct Costs
Each project and customer will want, and need, something different. The flexibility to “Wow!” them requires additional expenditures. For construction projects, this includes Materials.

Productive Units
All of the above is accomplished by understanding the finite number of units available for distribution. For service enterprises, this will be a reservoir of Hours; for a products company, this will be the capacity of the Shop; and, for an inventory business, this will be the Goods.

Guidance

Formulas:

Net Income = (Owner + Banker) / (100% – Tax Rate)
Value to Customers = Net Income + Overhead
Sales Price = Value to Customers + Direct Costs

Example Variables:

Owner Compensation: $80,000 ~ [For the Family, after taxes]
Debt Service: $40,000 ~ [Loans of $200,000, with 5 Year maturity]
Tax Rate: 40% ~ [S/E 15.3%, FD 20%, ST 4.7%]
Overhead: $144,000 ~ [Ads, Insurance, Rent, Utilities, Etc.]

Solution:

(Owner $80,000 + Banker $40,000) / (100% – 40% Tax Rate)
Is same as: $120,000 / .60 = $200,000 Net Income
$200,000 Net Income + $144,000 Overhead = $344,000 Value

For those providing Services to the marketplace, the final step is to divide Productive Units into the Customer Value. Full-time employment is 2,000 hours per year. Entrepreneurs will work much more than that — with only a percentage actually billable to Customers.

If our Startup Enterprise team can be 86% productive (after allowance for duties of internal and external management) each Employee has an annual reservoir of 1,720 billable hours.

$344,000 Value to Customers / 1,720 Hours = $200 per Hour: Price for Value

Those providing Products, or Inventory, for sale to customers, will factor in the Direct Costs. In fact, they will consider the number of meals (if a restaurant), or suits (if a boutique), as their Productive Units and establish their Pricing, accordingly.

Purpose

Now, step apart from the crowd and consider the most important variable of all:

“What is my passion – the one unique thing about me – for which the world waits?”

The rest of the story from our successful builder, quoted at the beginning of this article, “Find something you love to do and do a lot of it.”

If we are able and willing to tap into that passion and grasp the foundational principles of a Blueprint, we are simply minutes away from A Better Business Plan — and, a new beginning!