A Decade of Unstoppable Growth!

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As an accountant, a financial concierge and entrepreneur, I only really hit my straps after I turned fifty. Before then, sometimes I raced ahead, going full bore. Other times, I found myself bogged down by foolish decisions I’d made.

In my twenties, I ran an accountancy practice with 19 staff, turning over $1.2 million per year. I was on fire—but not in a good way. When I look back, I realise I was burning myself out. Why did I put myself under so much pressure?

I’ve already shared the story of my old mentor George, who ripped me off with a kebab franchise. By keeping my nose to the grindstone, I thought I’d make back the money I’d lost. If accountants go bankrupt they lose their licence to trade. My whole career was hanging by a thread.

Getting back on my feet was a saga worthy of a Netflix miniseries. Here’s the key point. I survived because I took a cold, hard look at myself. What I saw wasn’t pretty. When I took score, I realised I had so much more to learn about accounting, about business, and about leadership.

Eventually, I made my way out of the wilderness. I paid back every cent I owed. Not by working harder, but by working smarter.

I joined The Executive Connection (TEC) in Adelaide. Meeting regularly with a group of my peers, I shared my experiences, took advice, and helped others solve their problems. I hunted down inspirational business authors, like Vern Harnish, and devoured their books. Then I linked in with Alan Weiss—described as ‘the finest entrepreneurial coach in the world.’ Twice a month I catch up with Alan and an international group of consultants via Zoom. The insights and motivation I gain from these calls are priceless.

What I learned from these experiences has reshaped my approach to business. I run a lean shop with minimal staff. Working in conjunction with Tamara, I build sophisticated twelve-month rolling forecasts for my clients. Unlike Nostradamus, these provide accurate predictions for my clients, giving them the confidence they need to make the wisest decisions for their future.

I developed Strategy to Cash®, a business model which brings together a clear strategy, key metrics, and people. Strategy to Cash isn’t about dreaming up an unachievable blue-sky strategy. It isn’t obsessed purely with data, or indulgent of my clients’ staff. It balances strategy, data and people in a down-to-earth and practical way. And there’s a simple reason why it works.

For years, my life was out of whack. Now, my personal life and my business work together harmoniously. I’ve reduced my labour intensity. I spend less time working, but every minute I invest is high quality. Because my life’s in balance, I see clearly how strategy, data and people fit together to create profitable businesses.

I could not have offered a diverse range of services as a financial concierge in my thirties or forties. Quite simply, I did not know then what I know now. My pain is your gain.

I could say that I’ve invested in my own development, so you won’t have to. There’s some truth in that, because I openly share everything I’ve learned with my clients. But it’s not completely true. You’ve been in business for many years. You’ve had your successes and failures. You’ve honed your entrepreneurial instincts. Like it or not, you’ve been learning all along. Sometimes, our most expensive mistakes provide the most valuable lessons.

So now it’s time to put the pedal to the metal. Not like some teenager, doing burnouts in an industrial area late at night. You’re a skilled and seasoned business owner, in full control of your vehicle. Let’s take her out on the open road and see what she’ll do when you open the throttle!

One final ask. Maybe you have a friend or colleague whose business isn’t performing at its peak. Tell him or her to contact me. I’ll work with them to finetune every aspect of their business. It’s always more fun to bring a mate along for the ride.

Evan Bulmer
Certified Restructuring & Turnaround Practitioner ~ RTP®, Academic Member
Evan Bulmer & Associates
South Australia, National / International
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