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Showing posts from July, 2013

Give It Some Time, You'll Grow Into It!!!

Oh some freakin, somebody told me the once, where he was coming from I don't know, but it wasn't in my galaxy! You either hit the ground running, and I mean literally. or someone was going to catch you and then you're done. You see I had little or no capital, A bank that if I made one wrong move would shut me down, an owner who if I missed a payment to could take it all back over and creditor's, who even though I wasn't specifically responsible for, I inherited that too. Wow, I often wondered about these rich people who really inherited anything worthwhile, like a trust fund or millions of dollars set aside from a family trust. I was a million miles away from that, so where was I? I was the same place I was when I was 12 years old only now the consequences were real. I mean when I was 12 we lived in a project, if my parents got kicked out, or the lights got shut off, well, that wasn't my problem to fix right? Or was it ? Maybe it was, maybe we should all take r…

Ground Zero!! There's Nowhere To Go but Up!!

I am sitting there in the corner office, wow, everything I ever wanted, well sort of. I own the company 100% outright, well, sort of, because I owe the previous owner $450,000 and he is holding the stock incase I don't pay him. Then he gets everything back! So I could fix 98% of the problem, stumble on some unforeseen rock, miss a payment and he gets everything back!! Great deal!! I found out it was ultimately my fault for signing such a one way transaction, but at the time my lawyer's got the wrath of the frustration I felt. You see, I wanted it so bad, I blindly agreed to terms that were not only unrealistic, they were probably insane!! I think I took the whole, don't let anything stop you from you attaining your goals, WAAAY to seriously. What had I done? I have signed my life away, assumed all the company's previous debt, which I didn't have a clue of the real amount, and I signed my life away to a bank that didn't care if I lived or was homeless. They just…

So I Have a Tiger By The Tale But Maybe Its The Wrong Tiger!!

After I bought the company and the bank was satisfied and the transaction went through, my head was spinning! All of a sudden, I was the man in charge, the buck stops here. These are the times when after ten years of preparing I could do what I thought needed to be done, I saw all the things the owner did, and didn't particularly agree with his style or decisions in many cases. Well now I could do anything I saw fit. There was just one problem with that scenario. It is easy to criticize when it you are not the person making the decisions, it is EASY to second guess after the fact, it is really easy to say"hey I told you so". It is really difficult when the buck stopped at your front door. Not to say I wasn't confident, it just gave me a pretty instant alternate perspective.
At first though I didn't care, new found freedom, I could do anything I want, implement any new changes I saw fit. I could force my will on the company because as a person who owns 100% of any…

What are Banks Really for??????????

So having said all that and being wrapped up six ways to Sunday. It was what was. It was definitely a death sentence, but maybe a slow walk to the rifle range. You see a lot of people blamed me for the position we were in! You know when Araban was small and our sales were 5.7 million dollars a year, we were solid! Yeah i would have to agree with that but where was it going? The other thing was nobody realized the old owner was making $1,000,000 bucks a year and not putting a dime back in to grow the company. I didn't even know that until I bought it and had control of the books so, what are you going to do tell everyone a boohoo story of how the owner underpaid you, overworked you never even knew half your names but it is going to be ok?
No I had a different plan a more transparent plan, but I needed help, I needed to change the culture in a hurry and I felt like I was part of the culture. I needed a few good men to be on a management team that could implement my vision of changin…

Put On THe Head phones and let All the White Noise Pass you by!!

Here I am in the middle of a complete blizzard, but once people find out you own your own business, everyone has an opinion! Everyone wants to pry, it is a very strange thing. You gain this instant status  and I really don't know why! I mean 95 % of the people I met after I owned the company, kind of raised an eyebrow, and instantly assumed you were successful and on autopilot! It is a very weird thing,   and generally kind of annoying. I was a business owner yes, with a brand, yes, was it doing well, NO, but its funny no one bothered to ask? It was like, well, wow he owns that business, how successful! Nothing could be further from the truth. But then your pride and your ego kicks in and you feel the need to tell people everything is going great. When in fact, you are  in the biggest storm of your entire life.
You see, when the average person finds out you own a business they automatically assume you are doing great, that was far from the case. So very few people actually realize…

Identifying The Seventh Wave!!!

So now, the education begins. I had inherited a veritable sinking ship!! I had to have a strategy to survive the onslaught that was certainly coming. Now bear with me, because this gets a little bit philosophical. What you have to do is identify the seventh wave! The ocean is a great example of this because every seventh wave is the biggest, so to understand this you have to identify which problems are the seventh wave and compartmentalize them. Once you do that you have to identify which ones are potential tsunami's and which ones are just natural flows of the business and your daily routines. Once you have identified the biggest waves, those are the ones you are going to have to focus on first or else you drown. and the ship goes with you!
So that's what I did, I along with my team of people I had hired around me quickly identified the biggest problems and then broke them down into smaller micro problems. When you do this it gives you the ability to not be overwhelmed and th…

So The Stars Rained Down on Boston......

Two days, that's all it took, until I got a call from the owner. It was the longest 48 hours I have ever spent but I was all in, on not bowing to the pressure! I get a call , and he says come back in and we will talk. I agreed.
It was one of the more bizarre conversations I have ever had in business. Again, he grilled me that I must have partners, I assured him I didn't. He wanted to know where I got the money, I told him it was none of his business, it was really strange, because we were pretty close and now the mistrust reared its ugly head.
I told him the truth that I managed to borrow what I could and you could tell he really didn't believe me, but I didn't care, it was the truth. He came up with a scenario that he would sell me the business, but if I defaulted on one of many restrictions, he would take it back and be free to sell all the assets and leave me high and dry! I agreed to the death sentence believing I could save it and that was that. We shook on it and…

Don't read it if you are some scammer!!

I have been looking at my statistics lately and there is some strange source called filmhill following. Come to find out!! They are some scam artist company that tries to link their crap to unsuspecting blogs and it is a bunch of crap advertising. Hey guys, I have one response to that!!! you are not welcome here so get out of my hair and move on!! I don't need the 15 hits a day you are looking at my blog! Reader's do not follow or click on any strange links you see on my blog!! I have some advertising that I feel is good product and relevant to my content!! Filmhill is not one of them, SO PLEASE GO AWAY!!! The internet, such a bitch you know..... So Illy yes, K-cups yes, the wine guy even cash money machines yes. anything else do not click on it if you see it. FilmHill you are NOT welcome!! Bye

If you Aint In You are Out!!

First of all let me apologize for spelling someone who thought enough to follow me and I mispelled their name it is Kostantina, I am very sorry, careless mistake.
So here we go again!!
I have 40 hours to put this together. The first thing I am worried about is, hey if all else fails, will I ever be able to pat=y back my friend who is now backing me in this crazy proposal. Because that is what it was insanity. Ask any savvy business person if he would try to finance and sign a deal , that just included the buyer taking over the stock,(complete nonsense #1), and then securing a bank that was unsecured with a personal guarantee, AND enter into a forbearance agreement,(complete nonsense #2 &3), and sign your name on the dotted line that basically exonerated the previous owner from any wrong doing, and assuming ALL the debts you know about, and DON'T know about are now yours!!!
What a great deal huh? Complete and utter LUNACY!!! A Harvard B school course on THINGS YOU SHOULD NEVER …

IF YOU BUILD IT THEY WILL COME!!!!

Do you believe that I DO!! You will come I hope because I am going to turn this thing into a book with much more detail and then another and then another!!! There will be 3 books!! I love that title!! Great movie by the way too. Joe

Thank you for joining my circle!

Thank you to Tariqul Islam, Matt Helbig and Konstantina Fotiou for adding me to their circles!! Thanks again, I hope you enjoy the story and tell others about it, I am very honored and happy you have chosen to follow!! Thanks, again Joe

IF You Just Look In The Mirror And Really See The Truth You Will Know The Answer!!!

We all know the answer to the million dollar question. It is as simple as looking inside and really knowing who you are. But I believe the answer you will receive will differ depending on the point you are in your life. Heavy stuff right? No not really, because there is nothing like experience to bring things in perspective, but I also believe that in that moment, without regard of that, the decision you make if you are true to yourself, and fully engaged is the right one! Right? Get it? Because, the decision you make as long as you are true to yourself can always be shaped into something else! Right? We do not live in a static existence, we do not live in a one thing changes your life forever life!! WE DO NOT!! You may think you do, but that's what makes us all human. That is the beauty and the grace of this race. No matter what happens, as long as you keep moving forward, even if you think it is one step forward, two steps back. You will prevail. Too many people in this world li…

I'm Going To Pick myself Back Up Again... Or Get Back On The Road!

You know one thing is for sure. You have to have perseverance in this life or you won't make it. No matter what is thrown at you, you have to push through. There is always an answer! It may not be the one you think, but if you have an open mind and the dogged mindset of a survivor, you will prevail.
I was so down after my recent attempts to buy the company, I was lost. I was frustrated, but I never gave up. You have to get up every morning and put your clothes on, and see what you can do about making your life better. You need a focus, a goal, number 1. What is your goal? It doesn't have to be a life changing goal, just, what do you want to do today? It is that simple. Once you understand that, the things that hold you back disappear. The things that make you say, oh, I can't or shouldn't do that become inconsequential, it is your focus that will set your path. This holds true for mostly everything I have encountered in life. When we lose that process, that's when …

The Light Came On But I Couldn't Find It!

I knew I wanted to buy the business, I knew this was an opportunity. Not a great one mind you, but for someone with absolutely no money, hey, it was worth a shot! By now it was May 1997, we were moving into our new beautiful house at the end of the month. By now, I was fed up with Joe the b.s. artist. I was approached by at least 5 companies through Joe that were saying, "Hey you just show us the ropes and you'll be the guy!" Yeah I'll be the guy that is asking Joe Moakley for a job during the big dig, or calling up whoever I knew to due whatever. So thank god I didn't buy into that. There was one problem though, and it was kind of a big one! Chock Full O' Nuts was semi interested, to what extent I couldn't tell you but they were. I"ll never forget getting a call from their CFO and he wanted to meet me at the Boston Harbor Hotel. I wish I remembered his name, but I don't. Anyway, this was not good for my future plan, if they were involved that…

Reach For The Stars and Don't let the Gutter Break your Jaw!!

So, i thought this was my chance. I thought I could turn this place around. There was a lot going on around the peripheral also. The bank was quivering because they still had no security. Joe whatever his name was kept coming in for his 4 hours on monday to get his $800, and I was kind of left, to answer the questions. All of a sudden, the guy that was my mentor/father for the last ten years, wasn't really around! His brother definitely wasn't into it, and wanted no part of the disarray we were in.
You know when you really care about something you really try to make it work, but also, I started to feel the weight that he must've felt for years, or maybe not, he had a very successful run. I respected him, just like I respected my dad, and just like I respected his brother, who after all really hired me, while he was on his boat in Florida. So i was conflicted at best.
The other worry I had, was that the people who were there, if they really ever found out about the position…

The DECISION maybe...........

This goes until April, it started in late january, and it is pure torture on a daily basis. Now for some reason our owner has agreed to let a "workout guy" named Joe something or other come in on a weekly basis and do a weekly P&L on a piece of 11"x14" yellow paper???? I am sitting in the room supplying him numbers and he's looking at me like I am some antichrist! But everytime he left with his $800.00 check in hand , his numbers were showing that we were clearly making a profit. Now, not as big as we thought but we weren't losing money!!! Which was my contention all along. Even if everything went wrong the year before with waste, mismanaged production, throwing away packaging materials, whatever? I could only come up with a worst case scenario, that we wasted $480,000. That means everything went wrong, which it didn't, but for arguments sake let's take 50% of that. Ok, that is $240,000 we wasted on inefficiencies. Fine, I could live with that, …

The Time To Act is Upon You!!

So here I am in 1997, when everything I thought was going right, has turned 360 degrees within a two hour meeting with our accounting firm!! Everything I had been told and led to believe, had been shattered. I have my family in an apartment, waiting to move into a house that without this job I can't possibly afford!!
I attend meetings everyday with attorneys and banking lender's that get uglier and more dysfunctional by the day! I am hearing things that are not leading me to believe, this company is going to make it! A $1.2 million dollar accounting mistake? Where is has all the cash gone? The costing system is incorrect. Your margins are half what you thought, all because of one entry into a year end general ledger?
I wasn't buying it, I figured out in napkins on bars, I wrote it down in notebooks at home, nothing made sense. There was either a completely deficient computer error or someone was lying. after all i did all the buying, it was all above board, I did all the p…

Just a Small Town Boy..................

Just a little update!! If you could find it in your heart at the end of this blog page, you know that cash commissions ad? I just found out everytime you click on it I get $ 5.87!!! Didn't have a clue but you know!! Have fun and click away!! Invite your friends too!! Who knows maybe it can stop some of this nonsense although a couple of days ago I was convinced by someone in the know that it was the real deal, who really knows!! Go click crazy on my behalf! I could use the money, believe me!!

The Beginning of the REAL Journey!!

So now we get to the really interesting, moving parts of this journey. In the beginning it was Adam and Eve.... No no I have to get back on track.
In 1997, we were rolling, rolling on the river. That was until the accountants came in to do an audit and found out that our financial guy had, how should I put this....... hmmmm..... Mis-classified an entry that would change the company forever!! You see, he posted some crazy entry to the balance sheet asan asset and the accountants were saying it was an operating expense and , well that's when the shit hit the fan!! You see it wasn't some small entry it was a million dollar entry, that they said has to be re-classed as an expense?????
I was absolutely speachless. I tried to justify the mistake, I tried to analyze the mistake, I tried to figure out where in the books, could such a disparaging amount be and no one knew? It was absolutely life changing. Now the month before, we thought we were rolling and my owner gave me a generous …
So, do you know that coffee is the second largest commodity traded in the World!! That's right a close second to oil, wow that is an amazing statistic isn't it? Think about it there are hundreds of commodities out there and coffee is number 2!!! Who's getting rich off of that? Well it certainly isn't the farmer's in Costa Rica, Brazil, or Guatemala!! Unbelievable really. you know when you think of commodities there is soybeans, Foreign currency, Board, pork bellies, cattle etc., but no coffee is number 2!!
Anyway, please take a good look around the page and you will see certain advertisements for products that I have personally tried, and I strongly endorse, otherwise they wouldn't be on here!! Trust me. Go back and read one of my old blogs about the guy, who invented k-cups!! It is a crazy world we live in but his prototype is responsible now for 16-17% of all the coffee bought in this country!! I have worked out an amazing deal on 2 products in particular, th…