The current time has led to several changes in the working of businesses where entrepreneurs are trying everything to survive as the fittest. From changing the way of selling products to saving money, the founders need to focus on surviving through these times instead of worrying about how to make money. Founder X by Designhill presents the inspirational story of a founder who has understood the theory for the survival of the fittest since his childhood days and now, is one of the top admiring founders of the world.
He’s the founder and CEO of BOSS Capital Partners which is an open-source business operating system aka Business Operating Support System. He’s a Forbes author and writer for various renowned publications such as Entrepreneur, Fortune, Bloomberg, Washington and more. Being a TEDx speaker, he has spoken at multiple conferences and universities worldwide guiding future entrepreneurs and marketers about his business ideologies.
He has won 4 private equity awards for transactions between 250 and 900 million for building and selling 12 successful companies to date. Quoted by famous publications such as The New York Observer, The DEAL, and Thrive Global, Greg currently has been working on his Forbes book based on the BOSS mechanism and started to set up a new fund to invest in series seed startups.
What is BOSS about?
BOSS stands for Business Operating Support System. It was built to help everybody who’s building a business or starting a new business. It is a syndicate that makes investments into series C-technology companies that have a subscription model.
That subscription model allows us to forecast things. On the website www.gregoryshepard.com there is a tremendous amount of content in there that explains how to use the business operating support system (BOSS). There are videos and it depends on how you want to consume data.
During the current scenario when the world is constantly changing and everyone is struggling to make efforts for surviving, we decided to ask him how he has been coping with such changes. He said,
“I think in terms of the current scenario with my personal feelings and family, I think that this is a good time to really drill down and focus on what’s important. So for me, I’ve been doing a lot of meditating, a lot of working in the garden and I spend a lot of time with my children. As far as entertainment goes, I’ve been educating myself through a lot of different documentaries, to make sure that I understand history, philosophy, physics and things like that; which is a nice distraction as well. Also, going for walks, but it’s a hard time for everybody because it’s weird. It’s like there’s just something hanging in the air, a dark cloud, or something hanging in there that seems to just sort of hit everybody. It’s been difficult to not be around friends and family, specifically for my wife and children. I think the current challenges that I’m facing in this COVID situation are, in my portfolio companies I’ve had to change and sort of pivot them. There are two types of companies. Some companies work in a bull-bull market and some companies work in a bear market. In a bull market, you can sell businesses, work on businesses and sell products and services that make money because they’re opportunity-based businesses. When you get to a bear market, something like a recession creates a bear market or COVID, 9/11, 2008, the.com crisis, the tech bubble. They all created situations where people sort of curl up. In those situations, what they’re interested in are businesses that save money. So with our companies, we had to go through each one of them individually and change the narrative of those businesses so that the narrative was about saving money, instead of making money.”
Designhill: The struggle is real. And, there is no other option available than to face it. What advice you would like to give to your fellow entrepreneurs to overcome this terrible phase?
Greg Shepard: I think in a situation where everybody is sort of coiled up and holding on to their cash because it’s unknown, right? There’s a lot of money floating around but nobody really knows how long this thing is going to go on and everybody needs their cash. Every business is trying to figure out how to get cash into my business. I think if I am to advise entrepreneurs – I have a process that I use and it starts with a few steps.
The first step is that you have to understand that there is a circle of concern and a circle of influence. The circle of concern is things that are out of your control and the circle of influence is things that are in your control. When you have a crisis or a pandemic or something like this happens, the circle of concern gets a lot bigger and the circle of influence gets smaller.
The second step you need to do is make two columns. One column is for the items that are in your circle of influence and the second column are the things that are in your circle of concern. Then what you have to do is you have to figure out what is the priority of these things.
The third step you need to do is to decide which of those is urgent and which of those is important and then which has the highest impact with the lowest efforts.
Now you’ve prioritized things. Then, once you prioritize things, you can move into delegation.
So, I use a RACI model Roles: Accountability, Consulted & Informed
- Accountability is who is ultimately accountable, this is going to be the C suite, the founder, etc.
- The Role is the person who’s doing it or responsible for it.
- The C is consulted, those are the people you collaborate with and I am informed.
So, now what you’ve done is you’ve taken the list of things that you have control over, you’ve prioritized them and you’ve delegated them to your team. Once you go through this process, you will see a drastic change.
Want to hear more?
Designhill feels pleasure to share the inspirational video where Greg Shepard has been discussing his entrepreneurial journey, the challenges he faced during his tenure and how he shined to bring out the best in business by helping others.
Designhill: How would like to describe your role as an investor? Why you prefer to invest in startups?
Greg Shepard: I think that there are misunderstandings and gaps in alignment between the startup world and investors. Most of the investors make investments into startups, but they don’t understand from an operator’s perspective or a practitioner’s perspective like what goes into a business. So, from an entrepreneur’s perspective, I think that it is something that deeply concerns me.
Also, a lot of investors misdirect entrepreneurs because they’d never have been an entrepreneur and they don’t know what it takes to be an operator. So, they look at driving numbers, like growth numbers, when maybe growth isn’t the right decision right now. I want to remove these misconceptions, misunderstandings and gaps.
Most entrepreneurs need to realize that your business is just a product to the buyer of your business and does it make sense to build a product without having a customer? Absolutely not! So does it make sense to build a business without having a buyer? Understand both of those things clearly. That is a huge frustration for me.
A successful entrepreneur always tries to remain self-funded as long as possible. Today, when the world is on constant change, young aspiring entrepreneurs should look forward to knowing more from industry experts and getting inspired. The credo, ‘Time is changing so is the art of selling; One Should focus on surviving’ is appropriate to the current scenario and made our audience to wonder and monitor their business strategies at its peaks.
It was a great experience interviewing Greg Shepard and discussing his whole entrepreneurial journey. It was immensely inspirational. Greg’s interview will help millions of entrepreneurs to learn the best ways to survive during any uncertain circumstances. His advice will help many brand leaders to step forward and adopt this new normal without any hesitation. Designhill wishes great success to Greg Shepard a huge success in endeavors.