How to Grow 10-20% Per Year for a Decade

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It’s strange to hear a five-time Inc. 5000 lister talk about down periods. But his company didn’t start becoming profitable for the first five years, easily. What changed? EOS.

In this episode, I interview Steve Thies, CEO at Integrated Biometrics, about how persistence and EOS led him to a success that only 3% of companies can boast.

What we talked about:

- The origin of his company and the pain of long sales cycles

- How he arrived at cash-flow positive

- All things EOS (Wickman’s Traction is a must-read)

- His predictive model for his company’s financial success

- Value prop and persistence

For more episodes like this one, find us on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or our website.

Listening on a desktop & can’t see the links? Just search for Path to Profit in your favorite podcast player.

People who are entrepreneurs have itssuccessful as have to live by is just a persistence. I mean you just have youjust can't walk away from it or if you do, you won't have a chance. You're listening to pastor profit, apodcast looking at business growth from every angle, postle. If you're lookingto hear stories of success and failure, lessons learned from leaders that havegrown and scaled their businesses you've come to the right place. Let'sget into the show, welcome back to pastor profits, i'myour host for today's episode, stephen king cel of growth for s. I'm joinedtoday by steve tse, co of integrated biometrics, steve how you doing today,i'm doing good steve good to meet you good, to see you again good to see youagain, it's great hay on the show. I'm excited about this conversation. Ithink it's wont going to be one of the most impact we've got because we'regoing to talk about how integrated biometrics grew from a cash poor startup been there done that to a fifty million dollar business with twentyfive percent net profit. Before we tell that story, tell our listeners- who youare your background and what's the team at integrated biometrics up to thesedays, thanks steve? Well, i'm a mechanical engineer out of the midwest,with forty years of automotive experience and the private equity groupthat i was working with a night in two thousand and ten we decide to buy intoa biometric scanner business and we bought a position. A minority shareposition in a company called integrated biometrics in in that time frame. Soyou know i'm an olle rusper belt engineer that doesn't know much aboutelectronics today, leading on electronics based software basedhardware based company outside my intended future. When i, when i startedto automotive space a long time ago, that the team and i b and we callourselves ib integrated biometrics- is a mouthful. So i b is a little easierto say the team and i be we're growing pretty rapidly. We've got a tiger bythe tail fingerprint scanners that we make are serving governments world wide.We are involved in both the enrolment and verification aspects of digital identity and we're happy to bein ninety plus countries, with sales growing pretty dramatically in the overthe last ten years from a cold start up pretty much a just a cold start upsteve, so we're busy having fun creating new products and helping ourcustomers be successful by providing a good value and good, affordablesolutions to their digital identity needs. You know it's fascinating thatit's as simple as that right. You know, building good value and having a goodmarket, but a lot of people have a start up and end up not getting totwenty two million and twenty five million in revenue and twenty to twentyfive percent net profit right. It's it's not the top line that matters. Ifbottes line the medicine you know we got to know each other because you'reone of only three percent of ink five tousand companies to have made the inkfive thousand list five times- and you know i'm ordered to be part of thatgroup with you on the five time award. I didn't get my jacket yet, but you hadfifty percent year over your sales growth for three years in a row andusually when i talk to business owners like you, everybody gets excited aboutthe top line growth because you know it's easy to go to a trade, show andsay: hey we're. Ten million were fifteen million or twenty million, butyou usually don't see that growth in the bottom line and this podcast iscalled path to profits, because it's really not the top line right thatmatters. That's our ego speaking, but the bottom line, how you turn this intoa real wealth builder and an economic...

...engine that matter so, let's go to thebeginning. Tell me about the early days up to your first in five thousand oreven earlier right, ten years ago, when you started, you know what was it likewhen you w n there's early days what you focused on what were the big thingsyou had to do? I got you where you are today. Well, first off, i didn't knowanything about the biometric space or the biometric industry. So one of myvery first moves was to hire somebody who knew a little bit about biometrics,so we brought in a fellow from a well known competitor and he helped us tryto do something with what we what we had bought. We had made an investmentin a technology that we thought was pretty cool, but you know the firstyear was pretty ugly. I mean two thousand a d, i think two thousand andnine. I think we had seventeen thousand dollars in sales. I mean it was prettyawful and i think in two thousand and ten was not a whole lot better, but wedid we did a pivot. You know we. We were evaluating what we could do withour technology and the guy that i brought in said. You know governmentsmight be interested in this technology that we have and he had an old contactin the government that we went and introduced our technology to, and theysaid this might work so that began our journey. We were pre revenue with the aproduct that the government wanted for pretty much. Two years we were patientinvestor capital was a very critical part of that success. Factor at thattime that the technology we had, we thought it was pretty cool. You know wehad spilled the cool aid all over us and as an old mechanical engineer, i ithought this is pretty cool stuff. Our technology uses electro luminus film.So when you put your fingers on that film, it glows blue. You know kind ofkind of the color of an aqua color, not not. Unlike your shirt there, that yougot on or my shirt that i got on here today, steve so anyway, that patientcapital, we introduced our technology to government. The government actuallygave us a grant to expand on the technology and build the first productsand they had a need. Okay, they had a need in the in the theater for scannersthat were light weight. Mobile power, you know, did not give off light in themiddle of the night that we're clan distend to use in the in the thetheater and our product did that one of the big strategics in the space gotwind of that and one ed us for an exclusive and that two thousand andtwelve two thousand. That was two thousand and twelve two thousand andthirteen time frame that didn't happen and at the at the end of two thousandand thirteen, when it was all said and done, we had developed our firstproduct for the: u s, government, oh, we might have had eight hundredthousand dollars in sales. At that time we had spent a lot trying to get. Therewere no longer going to be pursued by the one strategic and we were kind ofon our own to see what we could do with this technology that was er. Theearlier were pretty ugly. It was all investor capital, a little bit ofgovernment grant money from that event as well, but anyway it was pretty uglysteve that was didn't have much to sell, but we had some patient investors. Youknow what are you doing in those early days? What is it that you? What wasyour focus? You know your patient investment is only patient for so long.Well, we were building our first product and you know we have prettyneat names for our products. We were building our watson, we had a watsonand a sure walk, you know and we were building watson and sherlock and we hada customer come along at the end of towards the tail end of two thousandand twelve. I guess it was and said i want to take this watson. I want to putit in a handheld device to buy a metric at the time were kind of clunky bigglass, prison, oriented things, heavy didn't really lend themselves tointegration of the tablets and stuff, and our technology was just optimum forthis. We have got a very simple bill of material, so i have one of our successfactors in our in our company's history. Is we had good technology? We had asimple bill in the trail and all we had to do was get it to perform in themarket place. The way we thought it...

...could so we started with watson, wedeveloped sherlock, which used a new break through camera process. A camerawas flat screen camera. We call it a thin film transistor and between thetwo of them we had a two finger scanner. You know two different, two fingerscanners: that was a niche mark at two thousand. You know for for the watsonand a sherlock two finger scanners, weren't as popular a single fingerscanners. They weren't as important as forefinger scanners. So we had thisniche product that we started to get some traction with. Then, by the timewe got to two thousand and fourteen before he we had anything else. We hadgotten our revenues up to about two million dollars, little less than twomillion dollars. So we saw a lot of interest in an unmet need in a marketplace. Were you burning cash still at a million in revenue? Oh, oh, yes, oh yes, oh yes, we burned cash. We burned cashthrough two thousand and seventeen. We were. We were struggling on cash flowthrough about two thousand and seventeen to get into that. Dick telltell us about what was going on. What did it feel like? What did you do? Howdo you know did you did you just have one investor? Did you get fam, friendsand family? I mean you know, did you did you get how much? How much have youraised? In total, we've raised an excess of twenty million dollars yehol,but it was but it was over. It was over ten rounds. I mean my my we started offwith just three or four of us as investors and that's we needed moremoney. We said well, this is so much fun for this. The four of us. We had toadd a few more investors to this story. We opened it up to other friends andfamily over the over the following five or six years, and i think at the end ofthe at the end of our last round, we had probably close to forty investorsin total, all friends and family management team members, people peoplewho saw what we were doing and set up i'll, take a piece of that so you're.If i did the right my i counted on my fingers, you were a series jay. Allright. You got ten rounds. Actually we went into ill series how okay, we a gottail, i'm sorry, okay! So so that's tough right! I meanyou know. We raised forty three million in my last business and you know theygive it to you the money like two weeks before you're about to make pair. Allright i mean tell us about you, know what it's like you. Don't you? Don'tyou can't get? You didn't get a check for twenty million. I imagine no! No!No! No! I was kept. We were kept on a short leash. I mean it was a constantbattle to prove it was constant. Bental prove that you know that what we hadwas getting traction in the in the field and that there was a reason to beopton in optimistic and bullish on the business. First of the biometric spacehas been growing nicely, so there was a good industry tale wind on it. It's youknow. Since i've been involved with, it has been growing at fifteen to twentypercent per year for the last ten years than is projected to grow at fifteen totwenty percent for the next ten years. So it's a good. The digital identityspace has been a good industry, so that was helpful. The fact that we keptgrowing in new countries- and we handed first success in brazil in two thousandbee- that was two thousand and fifteen. We had a little bit of success in theus and fourteen. We had good federal government customers in the us. Then wegot. We had some good success in two thousand and fifteen in mexico, andthen each year we started adding a few more countries to our repertoire ofplaces that we wanted our scanner the united kingdom came. Then we got intosome small eastern europe countries and then we got in. We got into morecountries down in latin america. We got into canada. We grew started growing alittle bit here and there in africa you know and and so he's kept- that incountries we kept finding people that, like their stuff, we got greattestimonials yea from our customers and we use those testimonials for both ourinvestors and and for our customers. We...

...put them on our website. We put apartner page on our website and our products kept getting integrated intomore and more mobile hand held devices. First, it was the two finger scannersthan it was a single finger scanner. Then we came out with a four fingerscanner in two thousand and fifteen and then a subsequent thin film version ofthat in two thousand and seventeen, and i think i got to go back in time one tothree four five. I think we we got our first in five sand, maybe for ourgrowth in sixteen over what we had in the thirteen- and i think it wasthirteen fourteen fifteen, sixteen or fourteen and sixteen and we didn't growstraight up steve i mean it was i this business is lumpy its government basedit's hard ware based. It wasn't recurring revenue, it was newapplications and taking care of our customers, so customers kept comingback, i would say ninety percent of the customers it wought from us in twothousand and thirteen and twelve and eleven that are still in business today. Still by from us, we had very little customer turn because ourproduct was unique and we took care of our customers. It was two thousand andseventeen we started to say. We think we got something here and we were justabout at the end of our investor capital to more than once more thanonce we came, you know a week from running out on pay roll and we tectaetold farlows and stuff. You know for parous and stuff like we did everythingyou can think of the stretch to dollar and probably a few things we shouldn'thave thought of. You know i just i just want to take a minute there and justreinforce that there's, probably a lot of listeners who are in your shoes backthen right now and it's encouraging to see. You know there is a light at theend of the title. If you've got a good product, if you have you have reasonsto be optimistic, as you say how you know, when you're, when you're justgetting enough when you're on a short string, as you use, you say and you'rejust getting enough payroll to last you. What do they give you, like? You knoweight nine months a year or something like that, yeah something what well itwas eleven rounds and seven years it wasn't. Sometimes it was only sixmonths only six months right i had this sack same experience and then whathappens is you know the money gets in the bank two weeks before two daysbefore you got to make pay roll and by the way the term sheet has a youwrinkle in it. You know, there's a double dip, there's preferences and youknow all kinds of vulture capital concepts, but you were lucky here right.You had patient investors, they stuck with you, but you got to be really costconscience there right. When that's, why they're only giving you money everysix months, how, when you got to that first ink five thousand in two thousandand sixteen and you know what was that and you were running out of cash? Whatwere you saying to the investors like? What did you need the cash for? How didyou? What were you going to do with that money? Why would they give youanother million bucks? We were for the first five years we launched our firstproduct in two thousand and twelve or second one and thirteen, our third oneand fourteen or fifth, one in in fifteen twelve twelve thirteen fourteenfifty four one and fifteen. I guess it was and then by seventeen it was ourfifth one. We kept launching new products and we were using the money,for you know, building another another rigit or investors call them widgets.We go m sensors building, another product that we believe that the marketwanted, and you know each one that we built. You know we had good successwith each product, so it wasn't a question of whether or not we knew whatwe were doing and building the product we built good products. Our engineeringand manufacturing team did do that, but there was traction with each product toas one would come out, people would start buying it. Now it's a long salescycle. This was one of the painful things we had going on. Steve was oursales cycles for sometimes two years long governments would come up with aan idea, and you know they would give us a bid andwe'd fill out the bid and they'd say...

...well we'll let you know when and thenbids got appealed and appeals a got turned over and, and so this is allgovernment did. Business was a long sales cycle, but we started using salesfor us and capturing our or pipeline, and our pipeline became prettyimpressive in terms of what the future might be. The growth in that pipe linewas a good tool for communicating future success m. It was, it was whenwe were growing, i mean in terms of our cost controls. We were just everythingwas done on the cheap everything you know. We we rented space for a thousandbucks a month. You know we didn't have extra benefits. You know there was nofour o one k matches or anything like that. It was you've come to work here,it's a fun place to work. We had a dream right and what was my head erin?What was the dream? Well, the dream was that we were going to grow. We weregoing to keep growing and we were going to keep getting bigger and bigger, andthen we were going to conquer the world our vision, our vision was that youknow we were going to become the number one f b. I certified finger printganner, a company in the world, and you know, went that vision. We started wekept talking about it. We we were scaling, we started a scale. We wentfrom one million to two million, two million to six melon, six million downto five five million up to seven and then in two thousand and seventeen. Wewent from seven to fifteen and i have raven fif, two thousand and fifteen setfive years later yeah to between yeah from fourteen to seventy went from twoto see two to seven d. Excuse me in eighteen, we went to fifteen eighteen,we nineteen fifteen, he, sir. So now, what's the point that you got toprofitability, what was that man ever? Oh? Well, we got the profitabilitypretty close to profitability in eighteen, maybe had a million bucks onthe bottom line in two thousand and eighteen, and that was we catch fullpositive. You know all along the way we kept looking for money. You know welook for venture debt. We look for. I look for equity from our from ourinvestors. I look for ventured debt. Look for lines of credit. We didn'tqualify for a line of credit until two thousand and eighteen we didn't youknow when i, when we were at five million wehad, we told you have to be to ten million. When we got the ten millionthey said you had cast phone neutral, then e, w n, we got the cash folneutral. We didn't need to venture tat anymore, so right we did qualify for aline of credit in early two thousand and eighteen based on our our twothousand and seventeen results in our fodesta. It was expensive, a credit tenand a half per cent. You know, but we grew through that period and did agood job. This is the tipping point right. This is where you're starting toget traction on the salesian and it gets you down to that that cash lowpositive. You know- and you grew that from you know, two thousand andeighteen to one million of profits to you know. Here we are two thousand andtwenty one to twenty two million in profits right, two thousand and twentyplus. How did you manage that? What was what's the secret to you know onceyou've got the fly wheel going where what did you? How does your managementsystems work? Well, i read an article once you said any time your businesstriples. You got to change your way. You do your business a lot. You knowand we'd triple a couple times from zero to get into seven and i started istarted looking around for scaling up guidance and i landed. I landed on onecalled one of my board. Members said: hey steve, you might want to talk tothis guy he's a facilitated for a thing called eosa yeah. It was a point. Letlet's take a minute here, because this is my love language. Okay, i'm soexcited that you're doing eos eos stands for the entrepreneur, organizingsystem right it's by from a book to her. You know, tractman gno wickman saidcall attraction, get a grip on your business, talk about what eos is andhow you guys implement it, because the audience may not know yeah it's a greatbook, first of gino as done a great job of making it an it's a simple. It's avery simple straightforward. I think maybe twelve chapters of of a guidanceand it works. We had a, we had a...

...consultant come and give us an overview.We decided we were. We didn't have the money. So we said we were going to doit on the cheap. We're going to do it, we're going to do it ourselves,soutient yep, we ell implemented my executive team, all they all put theirhands up and said. We'll start we'll support you steve on this: let's do itourselves and two thousand and seventeen was our first year of eos atthe end of that first year you know we had struggled that we were at sevenmillion of that year and we were not cast fol positive, but we had gottenhad a good fourth quarter. We had a good third quarter and the os wasdriving us going forward. The ous traction principles included the levelten meetings and the ninety day plans, and we would we were religious aboutfollowing these ninety day plans, and we still are big in to that, becausethis is this is something as a listener. I have the i do a lot of vestagespeaking and if there's one theme that i see and i look at the numbers becausewe do k pis for the members. The companies that are wilde successful areoften the ones implementing eos. So this is not an accident dig into.What's an ll an elten meeting? What is it the ideas? What is you know, the ninety d plan and thewhole process? Well, the level ten meeting is just a very effective nonrandom. Very scripted start on time end on time. You know get a little bit ofbreak it down a little bit with a segue have have a score card that you look atdone or not done. You know, bom bom, bom, bom get through the get throughthe score card and and he todos from the prior meeting in about fifteen ortwenty minutes and then spend the rest of the forty minutes discussing the keyissues of the day. And what are we got to do in the next week and to two weeksthat we're going to help us move the needle and it's a weekly process in thecadence, the cadence of the meeting? We first off it's you know it's an hour. You can our hourand a half depending on on your company and your team, and it's got theexecutives for decision makers there and you make decisions and you move onids. It identified, discuss and solve the s is solved. T is the discuss andand the salve visit to do you. So you take an issue. What are we going to doabout it? Wit's just going to talk about it? Well, let's not do anythingwe're going to just talk about it. Let's move on to some something that wecan solve. It's a good meeting, it's attended by about six or seven of us inthe group, and we do it religiously. Every week, once in a while, we have aguest come in one of our somebody else in the organization comes in they getexposed to it. We do these, quite frankly, in a number of places in ourorganization date started at just the executive executive level, but we thatwe've got one in our sales organization we got on in, or engineering an ordorganization. We've got, we've got one for customer satisfaction. We've gotone for quality. We do these level ten meetings where people can count onstuff getting done and not just talking about it and not wasting time. With nostructure to agenda, i mean it's very structured process. Very effective useof time you know the you know the ninety day plans are you come backevery ninety days and you say: what's working: what's not working and youfocus on what's not working and you develop action plans and rocks okay.The attraction book talks about this rocks and iraq is something that takes ninetydays to get done or that you want to absolutely get done. The goal of thegoal was to have you know, seni, you know the most serious rocks at theexecutive level and that everybody would have one or two little rocks thatthey would work on during the next ninety days. We've got seventy fivepeople. Eighty close to eighty people in our company today steve i got a. Wegot a hundred and sixty to two hundred rocks of stuff. That's getting doneevery now, ouns important stuff, that's getting done some of its. You know it'srelevant to the role and the position, but i mean the amount of traction thatyou get when you deploy this at this...

...process. It's just incredible stuffjust starts to happen. Oh, this is getting done, that's getting done andyou you know, as a leader, you're sitting here saying the organizationgets it yeah, yeah franc, and it gives you alignment right. Everybody knowswhat their rocks are. Everybody knows if it's not a rock just because steve'sgot a new idea for a shiny thing, we're not even going to talk about it tillthe next quarter's rock meeting right and that's really valuable. I'm excitedabout this. I can't you know it's one of those things. Ifthe listeners, if you haven't read attraction by gino wickman, it's gino,i've strongly encourage you to do that because you know this is a game changertalk about how you you scaled sales. You know. I know a lot of people aretrying to grow their businesses and they the hard part. Is you know? When do youhire t sales leader, right, they're, expensive and- and you know, and do youknow to start really investing in something because you know you're, aclassic start up where you got out, show the roi on your investors money,because six months from now you're going to need to get more cash. Whatwere you doing? How did you, how did you use sales force to handle from onemillion to fifty million in top line growth? Well, you know it was twothousand and thirteen or fourteen- and i just we had kind of two sales guys atthe time, and we didn't have very many clients, maybe thirty or fortycustomers at the time and as we kept each year, a customers come back eachyear, we'd had a few more had a few more and then we started thinking aboutadditional territories. I hired our sales manager in two thousand andfifteen, and before i hired him he was asking me questions like to use anykind of a crem system, and we had just. We had a very poor implementation ofsales for us. We were just using it and not very fully at all, and i could yeahyeah. We got, we got a thing called sales for us, but we're also using atool called lead, lander and he said well tell me about leaving. Then i saidwell, this is re lead, lander, yeah, lead, lander was just a who lands onyour website, and i was saying: well you we got two hundred people landingon our website this week. He went two hundred, that's incredible. You know mysales managers and, and then the next week, keep in this is when i wasrecruiting tisnt the next we tod and fifty said. I got to come to work foryou something's going on here, because we had all sorts of people landing onour website. You know we didn't know what to do with him. Quite frankly, soright long story short, i hired the sails sky. We grew our sales team fromtwo, maybe in two people in two thousand and thirteen fourteen. Todaywe have nine and you know we ended up over time. We've got. You know we gotthree in the asia arena. We got one in africa, one in europe, two in theunited states, one in peru in the a e they physically there are they in yourah they're, physically there physically there and i've got one fellows in thestates that runs the middle east. So we still don't think we're doing a goodjob yet on uncovered in all countries we're doing better than what we have,but we still got lots of untemperate that were going after as well, butsales for us today. It became this fellow that i hired was very familiarwith it. He brought with him access to a consultant who helped optimize andi'll, say customized reports that we were getting out of it. So we weregetting good, meaningful stuff. I don't know that's share share because that'sone of the you know the mistakes that i often see, people the implement of cr mor any accounting or any application of any end of any. You know department,but they don't know how to unleash the power of it right. What were thereports? What you know, i'm all about data driven decisions right. What wereyou looking at? What data were you wanted to get out of sales force andthen what to do with that? Well, first, you know first off we you know we.Obviously we put the client in what the product was. They were interested inhow many units and what pricing we had...

...had quoted or had talked to the buyersabout, and then we developed a ranking system from ten percent to ninetypercent. A hundred percent means we've won it. We got the purchase order, zeropercent means we lost it. What i started doing was i started lookingwell. How long is something that's at sixty percent before it goes to seventypercent? How long is something that thirty percent before it goes to fiftypercent? What happens on a weekly basis, you know, are the guys maintaining ittoday i mean i can go in. I was looking at it earlier today when i was talkingto one of our investors. You know: what'sit seventy percent, it's going to close in the third quarter. What's the topten items order to top ten projects in the in the qu there at eighty percentand higher i've tracked this for close to four years now and like i canpredict with a fair degree of certainty that if it's at fifty per cent it'sgoing to close in a hundred and fifty days and i'm going to get for i'm goingto get twenty percent of the fifty percent ers in the next hundred andfifty days. Well, the ninety per centers are in writing. So those arelike those are all going to close in the next thirty days. You know sixtyper centers we get about. We get about forty percent of the sixty presentersand they can take about a hundred and twenty days. So i can predict thefinancial success of the company plus or minus ten fifteen ten to plus e misten percent. It's a prediction tool that i use every week for both lookingat the history. What's been closed as well as, what's the forecast going tobe, and we use it to drive our demand planning for our factories, we buyhardware, we buy chips. So we use sales force as the as anything it's an eightyand ninety percent is inside the lead times of our of our long and short leadtime i or at least a short, lead time items we order raw materials based onthe sales force of probability and my sales guy. He i won't say he needs tocrap out of my sales team, but he makes sure that the sales team keeps theirstuff up to date every week. So let me summarize that, because that is, youknow we use hub spot and it's very similar. We used to use sales for com.The truth is like i couldn't figure out how to get out of hub spot. What iwanted, i didn't hire your guy yeah, but but what the same concept is, ifi'm hearing what you're saying is you looked at the different? The dealstages right, you got to lead, they become a qualified lead, they become ayou know, a bid. You get a proposal, you get a in. Writing you get a verbal.Whatever your deal states are, then you assign two things. If i'm hearing youcorrectly, you signed a probability of clothes right it. If it's in writing,it's got ninety percent close and then a time to close a thirty days at ninetypercent right or if it's fifty percent. It means that you're only going to gettwenty percent of those. What's the deal stage at fifty percent. What isthat qualified or well? Forty is qualified. Fifty is realdeal. It is where contender seventy, where the lead contender, eight, it is,we've won, and it's in you know it's going through. You know, governmentapprovals or a bit approvals that sort of thing. Ninety is the purchase ordersin in it. So you know each opportunity has created date. So i know when it wascreated. It has a targeted, close date which changes quite a bit, and we alsowe have things called blue birds, because some blue birds are things thatno one forecast it you know, or they come in and close typically, a dealdoesn't come in and close in less than thirty days, unless it's areplenishment order, but all of our stuff is bid driven. It's not it's notlike. There's a distribution channel out there that people are buying thisthings the buying this stuff off the shelves because they got in they got aneed for one. They have a need for one to come back to us and they order oneas opposed to that sort of a process. But we have one of the most importantthings to me that my sales guy, when i hired him, he said one thing for sure:stevie said i worked for a guy who used is use sales forest and he just createdlies with it. He says i will never do that and i said you'll never do thatright and he said i'll. Never do that.

So any time that i start to think.There's baggy information i say, may dave remember when you told me you werenot going to get baggy information in there. So you know that's a good!That's a good interview question for hiring a director self yeah! Well steve!I got i got. I got four pages of notes here. I think the the listeners reellygot a lot. You know hearing your story of going from a start up to fiftymillion revenue and twenty two percent ten million to the bottom line. I meanthis is this. Is the american dream and you know i love the fact that youstarted with people. You started with hiring an experienced person to helpyou as a sherpa. Really you know make sure that you knew what you were doingand you're lucky in the sense that you had patient investor capital right. Nota lot of people get to series l one a million, especially when it comes inshort strings. But that's you know that's what boast investors are goingto do right. You know the r. You know those shock tings are giving you twohundred and dollars for ten percent of the company. There's another twohundred thousand dollars six months later. But how do you? How do you getthat next round? Industry growth, new markets? You know getting some some bigcustomers that are that are bench mark, customers and and and customerattention. You know you don't have a monthly recurring revenue, see you! Youknow you. You figured out how to use those customers as testimonials for theinvestor, as well as for the website, so kudos to you on that. What i lovethe most those once you got to two thousand and seventeen, and you stoppedyou know you were like you- could have shut down there right, you're out ofcash, you're furlow payroll, you're cutting benefits, but what you did wasyou were able to show a pipe line. That was impressive. You were able to showleading indicators, and you know we're all about key performance indicators.The most valuable capis are the leading indicators they're, the ones that helpyou predict the future and you've got them in space. You were able to showfuture success because you could have a theyer life cycle. If you turned on,you turned on sales force to be able to show you not only what deals were bydeal stage in the pipe line, but to be able to quite monetize it to quantifyit. How much? What's the dollar value of each stage? You know if you got alead, it's ten percent and that's a hundred thousand dollar project. Thatmeans only ten and dollar counts right, but if you got a deal, that's ninetypercent that same deal would not count for ninety senorito. Now you've got anumber that you can count on, but you what do you? What you also did, which idon't see most businesses, do you had leading indicators around the salecycle and what that does is it gave you predictive index indices? It allows youto be able to forecast the demand in the warehouse how many chips did for byyou know we do with service businesses. You really need to do the same thingfor hiring and making sure that your your hiring takes eight to twelve weeksto hire. Somebody n, if you use your carm to predict what sales are going tobe twelve weeks for now. You can start to time when you make an offer tosomebody with when you need to build that capacity. I love that, but i thinkthe biggest get it big take away from the whole thing was, you know, and iwas interested in hearing. How did you scale this from you know: a million inrevenue to fifty million in revenue. It was it just the sales scaling that ithought was. We were going to talk about what was the management scaling?You know tripling your business every three years or if you, if you tripleyour business, you got to change the business. So you when you're started upin zero revenue, you were different from when you were seven million andthen twenty one million is different and sharing what you did about tractionand the entrepreneur organizing system and the l ten meetings on a weeklybasis. I hope people go out and get the gino wickman book, because you knowgetting stuff done as all it's all about meetings are the single mostexpensive thing. Any business will do if labor is your biggest cost becauseand if you sit there and just talk and...

...talk and talk, you won't get an ri, butby having rocks by cascading them to your eighty employees and being able touse that time in a structured way. You've demonstrated that you can getscale and profitability, especially when you've got an exciting productlike you've got so you know thank you for sharing all this. I think it wasreally valuable. Is anything you'd like to leave the the the listener? Were itanything that you that you think you know here's a lesson we didn't cover oranything that you'd like to just make sure that we get to well steve it'sfirst off. I think it such respect for people who try to start a new businesswho develop a concept and idea that they believe, if providesdifferentiation. I would. I would encourage everyone to understand theirvalue proposition, what it is they're going to do, that creates value for theend user. That's going to the make up, make a difference, because if you, ifyou really have that, then that gives you the will and the belief to keepgoing and it's that will and the belief to keep going. That will fuel youthrough the down periods because there's lots of them. I mean it's notyou're, going to have some initial euphoric successes and then you'regoing to have you know you're going to have the storms that you hate you hateto be in and they're going to come every year there. You know it's, it'sjust going to happen. It just happens so the key take away. You know mike thekey value that i think people who are interpreters. Have it successful ashave to live by is just a persistence. I mean you just have you just can'twalk away from it or if you do, you won't have a chance. So my story is bepersistent. You two can have celebrations. You know: we've been inthe south carolina as fast as grown five out of the last six years andwe're going to make it this year we're going to be we're going to making five,and so for the sixth time this year, steve and it all comes from believingand and not just believing, knowing that what you have is something isdifferent enough that creates value for your customers that no one else had cantake away from you, and you got that you're going to win. If you don't gotthat, you know you might think about how you're going to get it. I'm a metfan so you got to believe is what we would say and you got to have the datayou got to have the leading indicators and you have to have a managementsystem that will help you stay focused on the rock. So thank you. This is abit a great conversation. I really appreciate hearing about how you grewfrom a start up that was cash for to a fifty million dollar business with tenmillion and profits. If anyone listening has any follow, questions orjust wants to connect with you, what's the best way for them to reach you justlook me up steve tees on linked in integrated biometrics. You'll find methere. You can drop me a note and tell me you heard about this on stevenking's podcast and that'll that'll, get you an introduction to my real emailand address and and then we'll start our relationship. I love to help peoplethat's part of my style and if i can help you in some way, i'd be happy tothat steve tse, th, ies, cel of integrated biomedical for taking thetime to join us on paths, their profits and to the rest of you. We'll see younext time, viswas for more helpful resources to help you find your ownpath to profits. Growth force is the smart back officesolution that ceos need for better financial management at their business,delivering a level of reliability, consistency and expertise that istypically reserved for mid market companies from advanced bookkeepingmanagement, accounting, controller and advisory services. Growth forceprovides dedicated teams and cloud based technology that becomes ascalable solution for our we meet you where you are to learn more visit.Growth, forecome you've been listening to pat the profit, to ensure that younever miss an episode subscribe to the show in your favorite podcast player,if you're listening an apple, podcast, we'd love for you to give a quickgrating show just hap the number of stars d. You think the podcast deserves.Thank you so much for listening until...

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