This is the Measure Success Podcast, which features top leaders on how they measure success in their business and life. We talk with CEOs, entrepreneurs, authors, and extraordinary high achievers. The host, Carl J. Cox, is the CEO of 40 Strategy. 40 Strategy guides leaders to take their organization to the next level by designing world-class strategic plans and keeping them accountable to get it done. Go to 40strategy.com to learn more. As an entrepreneur and executive, Carl has been with 7 different companies that have grown from 2x to 7x. Carl is the author of Lost at CEO, An Entrepreneur's Guide to Strategy. This book reached #1 Amazon bestseller in 12 separate categories at launch, and a must-read for entrepreneurs and leaders.
🌟 Elevating Business Valuation with the Measure Success Podcast 🌟
16:50Welcome to the Measure Success Podcast, today we share how to boost your business valuation beyond the conventional metrics. In a market driven by EBITDA and industry multiples, we explore how savvy entrepreneurs can significantly influence their company’s worth by strategically managing risks. What We Cover: Understanding the Multiple: Learn how the industry multiple affects your business valuation and how you can alter this critical figure in your favor. Risk Reduction Strategies: Discover 40 transformative strategies that reduce risk, enhance value, and make your business an irresistible prospect for investors. Automation & Delegation: Find out how systemizing your operations and diversifying responsibilities can shift your business from high-risk to high value. Investor Mindset: Shift from an owner to an investor’s perspective, focusing on efficiency, process improvement, and strategic growth to prepare your business for a lucrative sale. Real Success Stories: Hear from entrepreneurs who've successfully increased their business valuation, learning from their experiences and insights. Join Us: Whether you're contemplating selling your business, seeking investment, or simply aiming to increase its value, the Measure Success Podcast provides the blueprint for success. With expert interviews, case studies, and actionable strategies, we're here to guide you through the complexities of valuation, one episode at a time. Subscribe now to transform your business into a high-value investment and start acting like the savvy investor you were meant to be.
How to Be in the Top 10% of Leaders Who Reach Their Goals
16:59In the latest episode of the Measure Success Podcast, host Carl J. Cox reveals startling statistics: up to 90% of businesses fall short of completing even two-thirds of their strategic objectives. This significant shortfall indicates a vast majority of CEOs and entrepreneurs are failing to meet their most ambitious goals, resulting in an accumulation of unachieved strategic plans. However, Carl J. Cox, the CEO and founder of 40 Strategy, assures listeners that this grim statistic need not apply to them. With a wealth of experience from leading seven organizations to exponential growth across four continents, Cox is more than qualified to guide aspiring leaders out of this rut. The Measure Success Podcast, known for its insightful take on business strategies and growth, introduces Cox not just as a host but as a guest in this special solo episode. Cox, whose vision for 40 Strategy aims to impact over 1 million people and 10,000 organizations while donating at least $1 million to charity, shares invaluable principles that promise to transform strategic objectives into actionable and realistic plans. Listeners can expect a deep dive into why strategic planning often fails and how to counteract these common pitfalls. Cox draws parallels between strategic planning and seemingly unrelated concepts, such as the decision to purchase a Peloton bike, to illustrate his points vividly. Additionally, he debunks the myth of success being merely about "being in the right place at the right time," using Amazon’s early days as a case study for strategic foresight and execution. This episode is packed with insights and practical advice, including: The story behind the name and mission of 40 Strategy. Common misconceptions about strategic planning and how to overcome them. The significance of distinguishing between leading and lagging indicators in business. Applying Fortune 500 growth strategies to small and medium-sized businesses. Utilizing the Pareto principle to prioritize goals and achieve significant outcomes. The benefits of engaging a third-party to critique and enhance strategic plans. A step-by-step guide to conducting the "dot exercise" for effective strategic planning. Identifying and addressing the three major barriers to business growth and success. By the end of this episode, Carl J. Cox aims to equip leaders with the knowledge and tools to join the elite 10% of leaders who not only set ambitious goals but achieve them. Tune into the Measure Success Podcast for an episode filled with actionable strategies that promise to elevate your strategic planning and propel your business toward unprecedented growth. Listeners are encouraged to subscribe to the Measure Success Podcast for more episodes that offer expert guidance on navigating the complexities of business strategy and leadership. With Carl J. Cox at the helm, achieving your business goals has never been more attainable. Resources Mentioned in This Episode: Buy a copy of “Lost at CEO: An Entrepreneur’s Guide to Strategy” by Carl J. Cox 40 Strategy Contact 40 Strategy Carl J. Cox on LinkedIn
How to Build Confidence to Achieve Leadership Goals
35:48In This Episode: CEOs and entrepreneurs may appear confident, but the reality is that confidence can be elusive and challenging to nurture. In this episode, our guest, Nicole Kalil, an expert in leadership development, discusses strategies for leaders to enhance their confidence and achieve their strategic objectives. Nicole Kalil is a renowned speaker, author of "Validation is For Parking," a leadership strategist, respect coach, and the host of the "This is Woman’s Work Podcast." Having transitioned from the C-suite at a Fortune 100 company, she has empowered countless women in business and gained valuable insights into the structural, systemic, and social challenges facing women and leaders within organizations. Listen to the full conversation to discover how to build and maintain confidence as a business leader, tackle "head trash," implement the rule of three for life and business, and gain more insights. Here's a Glimpse of What You'll Learn: 1. Nicole's career transition from the finance industry and the C-suite to entrepreneurship. 2. The significance of building self-trust and Nicole's "obsession" with confidence. 3. Nicole's 3-step process for developing confidence. 4. Embracing imperfection as a parent and insights into Nicole's book. 5. "A-ha" moments from Nicole's book that have impacted readers. 6. Understanding and overcoming "head trash." 7. The interplay of perfectionism, head trash, and comparison in undermining confidence. 8. Gender differences in confidence across the lifespan. 9. Nicole's "rule of three" for prioritizing business and life. 10. The importance of "business planning" in Nicole's marriage and family life. Resources Mentioned in This Episode: Nicole Kalil's Website Connect with Nicole Kalil on LinkedIn Follow Nicole Kalil on Instagram Listen to This is Woman’s Work Podcast Get a copy of "Validation is For Parking: How Women Can Beat the Confidence Con" by Nicole Kalil Explore "This Sh*t Works: A No-Nonsense Guide to Networking Your Way to More Friends, More Adventures, and More Success" by Julie Brown Buy a copy of "Lost at CEO: An Entrepreneur’s Guide to Strategy" by Carl J. Cox Learn more about 40 Strategy Connect with Carl J. Cox on LinkedIn Don't miss this insightful conversation on building leadership confidence with Nicole Kalil. Tune in now!
Let Go, Elevate Your Business - Brad Koehn's Expert Insights
29:58In This Episode: As a highly successful CEO or entrepreneur, your journey has been marked by hard work, exceptional skills, and the creation of your business from the ground up. However, as your business evolves or undergoes changes in ownership, relinquishing control can be a daunting challenge. In this episode, we explore how loosening your grip on your business may be precisely what it needs. Our featured guest, Brad Koehn, boasts three decades of experience in IT Consulting, with a background in software engineering, leadership, and executive coaching. Today, he operates a solo practice catering to the unique needs of small business owners, specializing in helping them navigate the complexities of growth, acquisition, and divestiture. Brad's guidance empowers his clients to make their businesses more profitable, easier to manage, and more valuable when they consider selling. Tune in to the full episode to gain insights into how Brad coaches business leaders to overcome fear and uncertainty, the significance of having a future vision, common pitfalls hindering strategy execution, preparing businesses for sale, fostering leadership development, and more. Here’s a Glimpse of What You’ll Learn: Exploring the similarities and differences between Carl and Brad's approaches to assisting small to medium-sized business owners. Identifying the true stumbling blocks for business owners, often not related to technical challenges. Uncovering the major hurdles companies face when executing their strategies and visions. Typical challenges business owners encounter when preparing to sell their businesses. The downstream effects of neglecting leadership development within an organization. Embracing the idea of hiring individuals smarter than oneself and overcoming the associated fears. Brad's personal journey of managing emotions through flying airplanes and imparting these lessons to CEOs and entrepreneurs. Insights into the "4 R's" that help CEOs identify and manage behaviors hindering their goals. Brad's approach to helping business owners discover their identity beyond their company. Measuring success in Brad's business and for his clients. Exploring Brad's personal habits for maintaining peak performance. Resources Mentioned in This Episode: Koehn Consulting Website Brad Koehn on LinkedIn Book: "Helping People Change: Coaching with Compassion for Lifelong Learning and Growth" by Richard Boyatzis, Melvin L. Smith, and Ellen Van Oosten Buy a copy of "Lost at CEO: An Entrepreneur’s Guide to Strategy" by Carl J. Cox 40 Strategy Contact 40 Strategy Carl J. Cox on LinkedIn
Strategic planning in government: Lessons from a city manager
34:00In This Episode: While strategic planning certainly plays a huge role in the business world, a version of strategic planning also drives our local, state, and federal government. We usually just don’t notice it, because we can’t see behind the scenes. But there are still important lessons that entrepreneurs can learn from those who have worked in the public sector. Our guest this week is someone who has plenty to teach. Andy Takata has worked as a city manager and has over 21 years of experience with three full-service cities and two contract cities. He’s worked in economic development, planning, recreation, development, and municipal-operated water, wastewater, and electrical utilities. Tune into the full conversation for more on some of the differences in effective strategic planning for the private sector vs the public sector, how to avoid getting distracted by “shiny objects” when you already have a set plan (plus the potential benefits of noticing those shiny objects), Andy’s experience officiating water polo at the Olympics, and a lot more. Here’s a Glimpse of What You’ll Learn: What Andy does now, and why he came out of retirement in order to do it The two main forms of local government and the differences in how cities are run How long it takes to complete projects at the governmental level, and why these processes can sometimes take a long time How to deal with differences in political ideologies when crafting and executing long-term strategic plans for cities and communities The differences in how success is measured in the public sector vs in the private sector How Andy got involved with water polo, and how he worked his way up to eventually refereeing at the Olympics How Andy has built effective habits in his life and how those habits enabled him to keep a balance in his life despite being involved in so many things The difference between being “busy” and “busy strategically” How Andy has been able to avoid shiny object syndrome in his work, and the advice he would give to others to not get distracted by things that won’t move you forward One surprising observation that Andy had about the world-class athletes at the Olympics (and the ones who didn’t make the cut) How Andy measures success in his personal life — and how that might shift as he prepares to head into his second retirement Resources Mentioned in This Episode: The city of DuPont, Washington Andy Takata on LinkedIn “If it Ain’t Broke…Break It!: And Other Unconventional Wisdom for a Changing Business World” by Robert J. Kriegel and Louis Palter “Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap and Others Don’t” by Jim Collins “For the Love of Cities” by Peter Kageyama “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People” by Stephen R. Covey Buy a copy of “Lost at CEO: An Entrepreneur’s Guide to Strategy” by Carl J. Cox 40 Strategy Contact 40 Strategy Carl J. Cox on LinkedIn
How to experience transformation through writing a book
33:21In This Episode: Authors — and business owners — write books for all kinds of reasons. They want to build an audience, earn money, share their expertise, attract leads, or maybe even try to become famous. But one of the most important things that happen during the book-writing process is the *internal* transformation. And that’s what our guest this week is an expert at leading people through. Dr. Kent Gustavson is a prize-winning writer, entrepreneur, and musician, who has published hundreds of books and worked with thousands of authors on achieving their goals. Tune into the full conversation for more about the ghostwriting process, what makes a good ghostwriter (and why they should be similar to therapists), the benefit of writing with a small audience in mind, the big mistake that many first-time authors make, and a lot more. Here’s a Glimpse of What You’ll Learn: More about Kent’s ghostwriting business, and how he and his team do it differently than the typical way The difference between what Kent does vs “coaching” Why Kent compares ghostwriters and editors to both therapists and strategists What “chronic curiosity” means — and why it’s important to be “savage” with ghostwriting clients The biggest surprises that Kent’s clients experience after working with a ghostwriter, and why transformation is such an important part of the process Why all books should be written for a small audience, and why Kent cautions against authors writing their “magnum opus” Why 99.9% of people shouldn’t be focusing on “tribe building” when they write a book Why Kent’s definition of measuring success involves “taking layers of varnish off” The differences between perceived success and real success The important habits Kent has integrated into his life, including those that are possible thanks to his home in Europe Why Kent sees “everything as music” (and improvisation) Some book recommendations from Kent Resources Mentioned in This Episode: Dr. Kent Gustavson’s website Dr. Kent Gustavson on LinkedIn Thought Leader Press website “Angela’s Ashes:A Memoir” by Frank McCourt “The Prophet” by Kahlil Gibran “The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy” by Douglas Adams Buy a copy of “Lost at CEO: An Entrepreneur’s Guide to Strategy” by Carl J. Cox 40 Strategy Contact 40 Strategy Carl J. Cox on LinkedIn
Testing your limits, with former ski champion and Olympic team member, Wendy Fisher
43:08In This Episode: When we think of pushing ourselves — in business, sports, or just life — many of us aim to be the very best at what we do. But sometimes pushing yourself can actually mean *leaving* that top spot — and setting off on a completely new journey. And that’s exactly what our guest this week did in her accomplished athletic career. Wendy Fisher was a member of the U.S. National Ski Team and earned a spot on the 1992 Winter Olympic team in Albertville, France. She transitioned into big mountain skiing, becoming a two-time World Extreme Skiing Champion and one of the top skiers in the world. Listen to the full episode for more about Wendy’s journey (from the U.S. National Ski Team, to quitting skiing, to a completely new branch of the sport), how she got through tragedy in her life, the habits she’s kept in her life, what she’s working on now, and a lot more. Here’s a Glimpse of What You’ll Learn: More about Wendy’s journey from childhood skiing to the U.S. National Team Why Wendy had a different goal every day when she woke up other than “make the Olympic team” — and how that helped her perform better Some of the challenges Wendy experienced in the U.S. National Team atmosphere, including isolation and an eating disorder What led Wendy to eventually quitting the national team Some of the tragedies and challenges that precipitated Wendy’s “never to ski again” road trip How Wendy got her start in her next sport, including a situation where onlookers told her, “We’ve never seen a girl do that.” How Wendy finally started to recover from the grief over the death of her brother, as well as an eating disorder Some of the lessons Wendy learned from her own experiences that she now shares with younger people, including other skiers Why Wendy needed to “pull her head out of her ass” and let go of what could have been, especially after she had her two sons Some of the habits Wendy has kept in her life, even after her competitive athletic career — and what it took for her to let go of some of the guilt of not being successful at something Resources Mentioned in This Episode: Wendy’s website Wendy Fisher on Instagram Wendy Fisher on Twitter “Open: An Autobiography” by Andre Agassi “The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself” by Michael A. Singer “The Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment” by Eckhart Tolle “Powder Days: Ski Bums, Ski Towns and the Future of Chasing Snow” by Heather Hansman Buy a copy of “Lost at CEO: An Entrepreneur’s Guide to Strategy” by Carl J. Cox 40 Strategy Contact 40 Strategy Carl J. Cox on LinkedIn
Bouncing back from rock bottom, with retired NFL player, Marques Ogden
36:36In This Episode: In the span of just a couple of years, Marques Ogden went from being an NFL offensive lineman — to part-time custodian, getting other people’s trash spilled on his clothes as he worked for $8.25 an hour. And while most people can’t relate to playing football at the highest level like our guest this week did, everyone can learn from his valiant comeback — from bankrupt and working part-time, to an inspirational public speaker. After spending five years in the NFL as an offensive lineman, Marques retired from the league. At 27, he founded a construction company called Kayden Premier Enterprises, which eventually went bankrupt in 2010. During his darkest hours, Marques pulled himself together, got a part-time job as a custodian, and with hard work and determination became an inspirational keynote speaker, executive coach, best-selling author, and marketing leader. Tune into the full conversation for more on Marques’ NFL career, what he calls his “spoiled milk” moment that helped him turn his life around, how he managed to get out of survival mode, what surprised him most about life in the NFL, and a lot more. Here’s a Glimpse of What You’ll Learn: How Marques got through one of the hardest times of his life — losing his company in 2013 — and how he bounced back from everything he went through trying to keep it afloat More about Marques’ time in “survival mode” — including getting fired twice in a week, working as a custodian and birthday cloud, and eventually how he turned everything around The grant that helped keep Marques from being homeless, and how he built upon that building block for even greater success The thing that surprised Marques the most during his NFL career A breakdown of Marques’ regular schedule when he was in the NFL, including the invisible hours outside of game time that fans don’t usually see Why Marques tells all athletes that their sport cannot be their “long-term” career Why an NFL line of scrimmage is an “absolute war zone” More about Marques’ rock-bottom moment from his time working as a custodian — plus the realization he had afterwards that changed his life The “4 V’s” that Marques teaches his coaching clients, in order to get to the fifth V — “victory” How Marques measures success in his business and life Resources Mentioned in This Episode: Marquesogden.com Get Authentic with Marques Ogden Podcast “The Success Cycle: 3 Keys for Achieving Your Goals in Business and Life” by Marques Ogden “Sleepless Nights: The NFL: A Business and Family” by Marques Ogden “The Breakthrough Code: A Story About Living a Life Without Limits” by Tom McCarthy Buy a copy of “Lost at CEO: An Entrepreneur’s Guide to Strategy” by Carl J. Cox 40 Strategy Contact 40 Strategy Carl J. Cox on LinkedIn
Writing your story, owning your truth, and finding success, with “The Shack” author William Paul Young
50:28One of the highest selling books of all time started out with just 15 copies printed at Office Depot. Paul Young wrote “The Shack” expecting to just give copies to his children — but the book quickly grew past even his wildest expectations. His journey to best-selling author is one that anybody can learn from, whether you’re a high-performing CEO stuck in “production” mode, or simply anybody who wants to leave an impact on the world. Paul Young is the author of “The Shack,” “Cross Roads,” “Eve,” and other books. He was born a Canadian and raised among a Stone Age tribe with his missionary parents in the highlands of what was Netherlands New Guinea (now West Papua). He suffered great loss as a child and young adult, and now enjoys the “wastefulness of grace” with his growing family in the Pacific Northwest. Tune into the full conversation for more on the backstory behind one of the most successful fiction books of all time, Paul’s definition of success (and why so many leaders fall short of that definition, even without realizing it), his top book recommendations, and a lot more. Here’s a Glimpse of What You’ll Learn: More about Paul’s background, including what led him to writing his book, “The Shack,” which is one of the best-selling fiction books ever Why Paul believes “every human being is a story” The problem with top-performing CEOs and other leaders who are production-oriented — at a cost Why humans are fundamentally community-centered — and how many have forgotten about that foundation What the core pieces of success actually are, according to Paul Why the inspiration behind The Shack’s plot and ideas was “incremental and painful” Why children are an expression of reality in people’s lives More about the story behind Paul’s “rock bottom” — and how he rebounded from that time The difference between forgiveness and reconciliation Paul’s one piece of advice to start with for anyone struggling A list of some of the most impactful books from Paul’s life Resources Mentioned in This Episode: Paul’s website Contact Paul directly at PO Box 339 Brush Prairie, WA - 98606 “The Shack: Where Tragedy Confronts Eternity” by William P. Young “The Little Prince” by Saint-Exupery and Antoine De “The Prophet” by Khalil Gibran “Spiritual Evolution: How We Are Wired for Faith, Hope, and Love” by George Vaillant “Across All Worlds: Jesus Inside Our Darkness” by C. Baxter Kruger “Unspoken Sermons” by George MacDonald “Living Fearless: Exchanging the Lies of the World for the Liberating Truth of God” by Jamie Winship Buy a copy of “Lost at CEO: An Entrepreneur’s Guide to Strategy” by Carl J. Cox 40 Strategy Contact 40 Strategy Carl J. Cox on LinkedIn
“Giving Back” Episodes: How to pursue purpose and passion
33:54How does your work integrate with your overall purpose and your passion projects? Is it possible to have both — and to use them both to make a difference in the world? Even after retirement from a successful career, our guest this week has been able to answer a resounding “yes” to those questions. Bert Waugh Jr. and his wife, Susy, began taking street youth into their home in the 1970s. In 1991, Waugh founded Transitional Youth, a nonprofit organization that provides housing, outreach, and support to young people who otherwise would be living on the streets. Tune into the full conversation — as part of our holiday “giving back” episodes — for more on how Bert got started with helping kids transition from living on the streets, what makes his organization different from others, why his focus is on youth mostly in the 18-24 age category, what others can do to help youth in need, and more. Here’s a Glimpse of What You’ll Learn: How Bert got his start with helping youth who have spent time on the streets, and how that informed the beginning of his organization, Transitional Youth Why the 18-24 age group is so particularly vulnerable compared to other age groups — and why Bert feels so passionate about helping them How Bert’s organization infuses more love throughout its work The role of drug testing — and second chances — within the Transitional Youth organization How Bert measures success at his nonprofit, and why thinking “one at a time” can be so helpful How Bert celebrated his 80th birthday in a unique way What made Bert want to continue working and making a difference, even after he retired from a successful career Bert’s experience after 2007-08 — and how he almost lost everything Resources Mentioned in This Episode: Transitional Youth website Bert Waugh on LinkedIn “The Coffee Bean: A Simple Lesson to Create Positive Change” by Jon Gordon and Damon West Buy a copy of “Lost at CEO: An Entrepreneur’s Guide to Strategy” by Carl J. Cox 40 Strategy Contact 40 Strategy Carl J. Cox on LinkedIn