How to buy and turn around a
distressed business or 'roll-up' competitors

On this site you’ll read real life stories of how 23 entrepreneurs find, fix and then sell small companies on the edge of failure. Sometimes we buy our weak competitors in a roll-up and get new clients cheaper by acquisition then organic growth. If you like these concepts, come to the next workshop. Learn how we...

✓  Find distressed companies that are worth saving for capital gains
✓  "Roll-up" your competitors for rapid growth with little cash or risk  
✓  Why buying a distressed business is the BEST way to do a start up

From KC Truby Lonesome Cowboy Publishing Inc. 301 Thelma Drive #426, Casper WY 82609 (760) 207-6385

If you don’t want to fail – get these 8 skills nailed down fast.

By on July 14, 2014
8 business skills

Like getting married or having children – business is another one of those adventures that anyone can start, but doing it successfully takes a well thought out, consistent effort over your entire life.   Kids and spouses don’t come with instructions luckily business does.

The Eight cold hard facts about success in business that you cannot ignore.

  1. Get Help. The days of the Lonesome Cowboy are over. Business is so complicated today, the margins are so thin and the market changes so fast that if you attempt to run things from your hip pocket and personal memory, you are finished. Create Joint Ventures, bring in partners (my favorite), hire the best managers you can afford, but most important build a network of advisors. These might be competitors in other cities, a few well-chosen mentors or a master mind group. But if you go it alone you will get blindsided by a market, legal or technology shift that you did not see coming.   We can no longer do it alone, we can’t know everything. Spend at least 3 hours a week developing relationships with others who may just give you that one piece of advice that makes all the difference in the world.
  2. A willingness to embrace continuous learning and endless curiosity. Start with reading. I read 50 business books a year in about 2 hours a week. Most books can be skimmed for the important information. You must keep learning or you’ll fall behind.   Then, no year goes by that I do not attend at least 4 business conferences.   The key to really making this work is to ask the promoter or their assistant who the most important people are in the room. Go meet them. My reading and learning focus on the 8 skills outlined in this article.   As for curiosity, if a competitor is doing well don’t get mad, get close. If someone is doing better then you – find out what they know and do the same thing. You’ll get the same results. If someone outside your industry has a new idea, learn about it. Keep learning.
  3. Management & people skills. Nothing will help your business prosper like a dedicated staff. You must hire people to do the work if you want to grow. However you must remember that you can get anything you want if you first help others get what they want. When something goes right praise and celebrate the individuals or your entire team. When something goes wrong, ask yourself what I could have done last week or last year to prevent that.   NEVER, use the word “I” when talking about a success. At the end of the month, you get the money – that should be enough, give the credit to your team.  I have a sign above my desk that says “God, today you can have all the credit for every sale I make, as long as I can have the commissions.” See item 2, take management courses.
  4. Risk analysis and confidence to follow your instincts. Outsiders think that entrepreneurs are risk takers. I don’t believe anything could be further from the truth. We are risk analyzers. In business between 80% and 90% of what happens is because of what we do. No other method of making living comes close to being that dependable, except maybe a government job. Learn to find opportunities like buying your competitors and suppliers. Take a close look at the ROI measured against the risk involved and then develop the confidence of your instincts. Make sure your team knows you’re confident and they will follow you anywhere. Take smart chances and grow wealthy.
  5. Financial literacy. 96% of all businesses that start up either fail (80%) or struggle at the medium family income for their zip code. Only 4% ever get past $1,000,000 in sales and a chance to join the 1% club. The basis of that success is to understand your financial statements and to read them at least once a week. We have our outsourced bookkeepers deliver 5 KPI (key performance indicators) to us each week so we know exactly what is going on in each company, before it’s too late.
  6. A sense of urgency and a fear of poverty. Andy Grove of Intel once said “Only the paranoid survive.” Every morning when I wake up I say a prayer of gratitude, then I ask God to help me get-er-done. This may well be driven by the fear of being poor it may be that over the years only those who have to get it done ‘right now’ seem to prosper.   Never let a task go until tomorrow if it can be done today.   I get my best work done the last 30 minutes of every work day. Make every minute count.
  7. You must become a CEO not a good tradesman. Act like a CEO from day one. Never do work that someone else can do. Hold people accountable for what you have both agreed will get done. Remember the 3 things your company PAYS you to do, and delegate everything else. The easy question to keep this concept working can be found when a problem or task comes to my desk. Try to simply ask “Who is going to do this? Do not ask how will I do this?”
  8. Ability to ignore negative influences. I can promise you that the world is full of predators, competitors and litigators that want to take everything away from you. They cannot do what you do, so they want to make sure you are not successful as well.   Know before you start that the bigger you get the more hell you are going to catch from every two bit loser the world can generate. What is most surprising is that most of the negativity you suffer will come from people who tell you they love you and have your best interest at heart.   Your right, keep doing it.


In our own personal life I keep a journal and task book on my desk to make notes about these areas of expertise that I must have in order to succeed. My reading list focuses on developing skills in these 8 areas.

If you have not registered for our next seminar on finding, fixing and selling a distressed company I recommend you take that step today.   Join others who follow these 8 steps,  learn from them how to grow sales quickly through acquisition. We’ll look forward to seeing you soon.


About KC Truby

From their ranch in Wyoming, KC and his wife Linnea have bought or started 21 companies as a side line to their accounting business leading them into M&A as a full time business in 2012. These companies are located all over the Western Rocky Mountains, London and India. Since 1969 through their accounting and training companies, KC has taught 18,000 business owners how to improve cash flow and find more customers by installing standardized systems in their small business. Since 1989 KC has presented over 1,000 seminars and training classes to the small business owner.

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