S4E35 Kristian Marquez Fractional CFO tips for SaaS and Venture Capital

S4E35 – Kristian Marquez – Fractional CFO tips for SaaS and Venture Capital
Kristian Marquez – Fractional CFO tips for SaaS and Venture Capital. My next guest shares his story of how he got into finance, helped grow a company from $0 to $80M ARR, and then started a company that ultimately went out of business within 2 years. The life of an entrepreneur has its peaks and valleys and his background is a good example. However, his next B2B SaaS has proven to find product-market fit and traction. In this episode, he talks about his business model, how much they charge per customer, how they market and sell, and financial tips leaders can apply to their own companies. Please welcome, Kristian Marquez.

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Key Timecodes

  • (00:54) – Show intro and background history
  • (06:27) – Deeper into his business model
  • (14:19) – Understanding his business strategies
  • (16:55) – A bit about his B2B SaaS model
  • (22:25) – Deeper into his marketing and sales strategies
  • (23:46) – A key takeaway from the guest
  • (34:09) – What is the worst advice he ever received
  • (35:09) – What is the best advice he ever received
  • (37:20) – Guest contacts


[00:00:00.320] – Intro
Hey, this is Sean Tapper, the host of Payback Time, an approachable and transparent podcast on building businesses, increasing wealth, and achieving financial freedom. I’d like to bring on guests to hear authentic stories while giving you actionable takeaways you can use today. Let’s go.
[00:00:18.090] – Sean
My next guest shares a fun story of how he got into finance and then helped grow a company from zero to 80 million ARR, and soon after that, started another company that went out of business in less than two years. The life of an entrepreneur definitely has its peaks and valleys, and his story is a great example. However, his latest B2B SaaS business has definitely found product market fit and traction. In this episode, he talks about the business model, how much they charge, how they market and sell, and financial tips business owners can apply to their own business. Please welcome Kristian Marquez. Christian, welcome to the show.
[00:00:56.810] – Kristian
Sean, thank you for having me.
[00:00:58.620] – Sean
Thanks for joining me. So why don’t you us off and tell us about your background.
[00:01:02.260] – Kristian
My pleasure. So today I serve as founder and CEO of Finstrap Management. We provide accounting finance reporting services for high-networked individuals, venture capital firms and early-stage businesses with a focus on B2B SaaS. And last week, marked our seven-year anniversary. Getting to this point, though, is somewhat of an exciting story. So by way of background, it generally comes up. A Service Academy graduate ended up getting a degree in general engineering, not accounting and finance. Took that route. It was just love of numbers, very objective-like answers. But after I got out of the service, I knew I wasn’t going to be an engineer and found that accounting and finance best suited my personality. So I had a variety of roles working predominantly in the investment space. For your listeners who are familiar with the industry, I ended up getting a professional designation called a CFA, so Chartered Financial Analyst Charter holder. This year, this may actually marks two decades as a charter holder. And really, a lot of it stemmed from the marriage of understanding P&L balance sheet, but making decisions around that information. Next big step in my career after I got the charter was 2004, got hired as a financial analyst for what was effectively an early stage business doing professional consulting work.
[00:02:32.280] – Kristian
Ceo was a go getter, very sharp, driven. He saw an opportunity in healthcare IT. A number of changes taking place in the industry, and so he pivoted the company into taking advantage of working with predominantly health insurance. So think Aetna, United, the Blues, in providing them a whole host of services around risk adjustment, quality measurement, reporting, and improvement. So I effectively got tasks from, Hey, yeah, we need you to be a financialist to, We need you to be a product manager. We think you’re smart and you have a tremendous attention to detail, which is going to be needed for this role. And so over the following nine years, accumulated a whole host of experience, responsibility. And in the final two years of that nine-year stint, Obamacare gets passed, and we’re effectively in the right place at the right time. I get asked to effectively build an intra-company. It was It was a multi-person effort, but I will take credit for bringing a lot of the vision to life and doing a lot of the heavy lifting. Effectively, it was a predictive analytics solution coupled with clinical interventions. We were working with Medicare Advantage members, and I ended up having a material hand in taking that business from zero to 80 million ARR in two years.
[00:03:50.940] – Kristian
In the course of it, our work was effective as well. So after a first full year working with a whole host of health plans throughout the country, to include Puerto Rico, Hawaii, rural, Metropolitan, between. So it was a significant, diverse sample. We had about a fifth of all of the privately insured Medicare members in the country enrolled in our program, and we outperformed the rest of the country by multiple standard deviations. So that company’s investors knew me, were bullish on me, and encouraged me to break out on my own. And after nine years, it was easy to do. So I ended up co-founding a telemedicine company in 2014. With two physician co-founders. Ended up raising two and a half million pre-revenue. Anyone’s interested in seeing the business plan, they can go to my LinkedIn profile. It’s Christian with a K, Marques. And if you scroll down to the project section, I’ve posted it there for everyone to take a gander. This was all written free chat GPT. But fast forward two and a half years later, we closed the door, having generated less than $100,000 in revenue and learned a… I mean, hardwired to win, but nevertheless, learned a ton.
[00:05:03.020] – Kristian
And one of the biggest lessons I learned, and I share this with all entrepreneurs, is you can have the most incredible idea on the face of the planet. It doesn’t matter unless someone’s willing to give you money for it. Right. And again, I reference the business plan because it’s a walking, breathing document of just logic and rationale. It doesn’t matter. It didn’t matter. And so at that point, I realized I wanted to get back to my accounting and finance roots. God bless health care, but it had picked me. And so I started Finstrat, and just for my love of debits and credits and FP&A and dashboards and models. And So far, so great. Today, we work with over 30 businesses, a majority of which are B2B SaaS, peppered with a handful of high networth individuals and venture capital funds. Very fortunate to capitalize on a lot of lessons I’ve learned over the years, working with really smart, hardworking people who share a passion for being excellent as compared to mediocre. And I found that in my experience, there really is a difference between coming at the market with A players versus non-A players. That’s definitely been a big part of our success, notwithstanding just some other unique approaches we take to the market.
[00:06:27.160] – Sean
Awesome story. Love it. Thanks for sharing the context there. You’re a sharp guy, but you had a business failure in there. And I think a lot of people, a lot of listeners have been there as well, including myself. But your business today, how many employees?
[00:06:43.380] – Kristian
We are pushing 30.
[00:06:46.800] – Sean
Wow. Nice. Okay. And why don’t you dive into FinStraat a little bit? What does it specifically do for the customer?
[00:06:54.610] – Kristian
So it’s a great question. And this actually really comes down to more of… It’s more important what our services yield than it is how we do it. So if I were to pull up one of our service agreements, you’re going to see in there debits and credits, reconciliation, creating invoices, collections, facilitating payroll, a whole laundry list of items that you would anticipate being in the back office. But the irony of it is, while our clients understand the value of the work, They’re more interested in our value prop. Our value prop can be distilled into two things. Thing number one is what I call fix it once. Number two is assist monetize the business. So fix it once, I have a lot. There are no shortage of competitors in the space to include companies who do their own accounting and finance. My experience has been, this is my experience, that 99 % of the financials and processes that we inherit when we onboard a new client are a mess. It’s just a degree. And it’s not because it’s a new client or because the founders don’t know accounting and finance or because they weren’t being prepared by a competitor firm of accounting and finance staff.
[00:08:13.270] – Kristian
My sense is a large part the way the industry charges their fees, they’re not… One, and two, as a consequence, how many clients they’ll assign to accounting and finance team? It doesn’t position them to Dadais and cross-tees. Just, again, by virtue of the work that I see that we inherit all the time, it’s more of a, Hey, just get this done. Go to the banking page within QuickBooks and just post everything. Whether or not it’s classified appropriately or the charge of accounts are set up correctly or you appropriately accrued revenue expense, eh. But by virtue of the space we’re working in, investor-backed companies, where they’re, for the most part, not everybody, but They have their site set on the brash ring. They want to monetize their business. They’re looking for eight plus figure exits. You can’t create a dashboard or a budget or a forecast if the underlying financials are not appropriately put together. And so we as an organization recognize that, and we realize that if our clients are going to want to monetize their business, all the back office debits credits needs to be clean so that we can present or we can provide business intelligence in the form of dashboards that provide accurate insight on a timely basis as to what their revenue is.
[00:09:45.240] – Kristian
But more importantly, what are the components? New, expansion, churn. Help them understand what they’re genuinely spending to acquire a business, how long it takes them to recoup their cash when they do, what’s the value of a customer, what’s the impact of higher or lower pricing on their performance. Everyone, I think, would agree there’s value in knowing the answers to those questions, but it’s somewhat inconsequential if you’re putting garbage in the machine. Right. And so I answer your question. It’s we’ve structured our offering to fix it once by being responsive, minimizing the amount of clients we’ll assign to a team. By consequence, we’re able to do that because our fees, I find, are higher, at least I know anecdotally, or I can see when we onboard a new client. But also just this understanding that these founders, they’re looking for an exit, whether it’s in a year or half a decade. And we know that they need support in order to tell their story. Right.
[00:10:48.120] – Sean
So it sounds like you have the technology plus a team of people to really keep the financials squey clean.
[00:10:55.830] – Kristian
So we do. And this actually dovetails into just conversations that I find myself in with entrepreneurs and founders. And how do you identify solutions whereby people are willing to part with money? I sometimes get the sense that there’s a belief that you have to create a new invention, a new widget. And my experience has been, it’s not the case. Really, I think it more begins with the mindset of just being amazing. And on the surface, you’re like, Okay, well, what does that really What does it mean? Well, it means being so good that people want to do business with you. And probably everyone who’s listening to this would agree that they’ve dealt with vendors, whether it’s commercial or consumer or business, where you’re just like, really? That’s my experience. And so it’s not a foregone conclusion that organizations do a great job. And so there’s an opportunity in and of itself. I think the other big one that I’ve more appreciated over the year is this idea of taking an existing idea and just also in a complex space and simplifying it for people. And so, I mean, there are probably no shortage of examples we can use.
[00:12:12.070] – Kristian
Probably a fun one everyone understands is Tesla.
[00:12:15.390] – Sean
[00:12:16.210] – Kristian
Cars have been around for over 100 years, yet despite the fact that they’re electric vehicles, I mean, Elon has taken something that’s extremely complex and is making it very affordable. So And so I think that is a great example, because if you can own your space in that regard, you have staying power. Then whether or not you continue to lower your costs or charge your premium is another story. But I said it another way, And I think a lot of times, entrepreneurs and founders can take a simple approach, more complicated, the more opportunity, and then really just focus on simplifying it on behalf of their customers. That’s the approach that we’ve taken with our company. If I had to distill our activity, it’s accuracy and timeliness. Founders want to know where they stand quickly. Let’s call it the first two weeks of a new month. But it also doesn’t matter how quickly you get it unless it’s accurate. And so depending on the size of the business, client count, vendor count, employees, there are a whole host of inputs that dictate how long the closed process takes, what’s your degree of accuracy. And what we’re looking to do is able to offer that to the market at scale because there are unique nuances as it pertains to B2B SaaS companies.
[00:13:43.310] – Kristian
They have a big dependency on what they call subscription or reoccurring revenue. And if you sell a service for 12 months, there is unique treatment that needs to take place in order to recognize that revenue on the P&L on the balance sheet. But unless you’re familiar with it and have established reconciliation processes, it’s not accurate. And again, going back to my earlier reference, many of my competitors, I just don’t think price their services. Did they actually take the time, energy, and effort it takes to make that right. And all the downstream effects it has, it takes when you go, it’s significant.
[00:14:19.960] – Sean
That’s brilliant. With your business, can you give us an idea what you’re charging your customers, low-end to high-end?
[00:14:28.190] – Kristian
Yeah. So fee-wise, we’re high four figures a month, though it varies depending on the size of the business. In simplest terms, the larger the company, the more work there is to do. And so there’s a variable component in how we assess our fees. That said, I’m very sensitive to buy versus build. And so we bring an entire team to an implementation for a whole host of reasons. If you look in an accounting department, you have bookkeeper, staff, accountants, controllers, CFOs, financial analysts. All of them serve different roles and functions. But because we’re offering… Our services are intended to mimic an in-house team, but I still want to get business. I have to be a fraction of the cost. So it depends on the size of the client, but I’ll be anywhere from a fifth to a third if you were to go employ a commensurate.
[00:15:19.980] – Sean
That’s a good way to position it marketing-wise.
[00:15:22.740] – Kristian
I wish I would have bookmarked this, but over 10 years ago, I came across a white paper where a bunch of researchers were looking at the most profitable companies in the S&P 500 over the last 20, 30 years. And there was only one variable that they were able to hone in on that they found out of companies that were able to generate the most free cash flow, and it was pricing. The thing that they had in common was that they were considered to be charging fees that were higher than their competitors. And that wasn’t lost on me. I don’t win all my business. And sometimes people tell me they think my prices are high. But I also learned there’s two different types of buyers. There’s value sensitive and price sensitive. Frankly, I’m interested in value sensitive because the business I’m in building and investing in is providing five-star white glove service. And if that’s important to you, I will find you or we’ll find each other. But if you’re really at the end of the day, you’re just wired to say, I don’t care. I don’t want to pay a lot. We’re not a fit.
[00:16:33.120] – Kristian
Because I know what’s going to happen. You will always ask me to lower my prices, no matter how amazing of a job I’ll do. And for that reason, I’ve turned business away, too. I’m like, We’re not a fit. I’m not going to be nickel. I don’t want to nickel and die my clients, but I also want to have an experience of a cut. Was it a thousand cuts? A thousand cuts, death?
[00:16:56.010] – Sean
Yeah, death by a thousand. You You alluded this a few minutes ago, which is your platform sounds like… It’s not just your platform, but your team, your service. It’s for the people who really need to be… They need to have a high attention to detail. So you serve SaaS, you serve venture capital, and every penny needs to be accounted for because especially… I’ve got to be to see SaaS. We serve the retail investor. And you have to be so clean on the books because someday, someday, if somebody were to approach us and they want to acquire us, it better be air tight with financials. And you, if you’re dealing with businesses, you most likely do have a lot more experience in this regard. People who are little, they’re not so clean with the books because they’re not focused on that. They’re focused on serving their customer, whether it could be a manufacturing company or a service business, or maybe it’s a restaurant. It’s like, Hey, we got customers to help. We’ll get to the books later. So once a month, practice, and you get to it, and then another month goes by another month. And it’s like, It’s never that clean, but it’s good enough.
[00:18:03.230] – Sean
But they’re not facing that 6, 7, 8, 9, X multiple, right?
[00:18:10.420] – Kristian
So I deal with this on a regular basis. So, yeah, a little bit of context. We lead audits on behalf of our clients on a regular basis. So working with auditors who are being audited because they have investment docs where their participants require an audited statement from the C-suite every year. We participate in closing debt facilities, priced equity rounds, safe convertible notes, take your pick, with our clients. And to your point, depending on the size of the raise, these investors become more sophisticated, and they know their stuff to the point where they can look at a set of financials or performance KPIs and know what they’re looking at is within the realm of reasonableness or something’s off.
[00:19:00.750] – Sean
[00:19:01.640] – Kristian
And so, like I said, I know my space is looking for founders who understand that that’s what they are going to encounter if they’re going to sell their business. So that’s thought number one. But thought number two is there’s an English economist from the 1800s, his name is David Ricardo. I don’t know how many years ago I came across David, but he came up with the theory of comparative advantage. In simplest terms, it says, Focus on what your highest ROI activity, and then don’t do anything else. Now, he’s oversimplifying it. But there’s real-world examples today of companies that have adopted this approach. Apple, great example. Their margins are phenomenal because they realize that their strong suit is design. It’s not manufacturing. So what do they do? They have service contracts with Foxconn and other providers to prepare their… To create their Their products in low cost areas, i. E. China. Ikea, another great example. You go through their showroom and there’s nothing but furniture, but really the company only designs furniture. They don’t manufacture any of it. They have partners who do all of that. And so there’s tremendous benefit, because if you don’t have to maintain any of that capital equipment on your balance sheet, your margins are materially better.
[00:20:27.890] – Kristian
So question is, okay, we’re not Apple, we’re not IKEA, but is there a parallel for businesses, early-stage businesses under $50 million, $100 million? And the answer is yes. I would say, generally speaking, founders are best-served, focusing all their time on product development and sales and marketing. And maybe I can debate on sales and marketing, but it’s not legal, it’s not accounting. It’s not human resources. You have a whole host of professional services support, where I would argue that’s not your core business. Why are you going to devote an FTE on your budget when that can go to an account executive or an engineer? And so there’s break-even points. And the way I think about it, I get asked this question, is, well, what point does it make sense to bring it in-house? And I would say, it really becomes the point where a C-suite simply wants 100 % of time of a CFO. Or, I mean, really, usually it’s the CFO because they’re less interested in the accounting and finance. But up until point, I think it makes most sense to outsource non-core functions to people who that’s all they do, because you’ll get a much better product.
[00:21:39.160] – Kristian
Yeah, I agree.
[00:21:40.980] – Sean
Let’s take a quick commercial break. So do you have an interest in investing in the market, but you’re not sure where to start? In that case, I invite you to join Tykr for free. However, if you want to go a step further and really get up to speed, you can go to TykrEDU. So check this out. If you go to Tykr. Com and then click on Courses, it’ll take you right to TykrEDU, which includes a few courses such as Stock Investing for Beginners that can help you get up to speed in about a week or less. And then I also have How I Get the Most Out of Tykr, which shows you exactly how I use Tykr in every way, shape, or form, and even has a few real-life stock reviews within. So if you want to start investing with confidence, I invite you to check out TykrEDU. This is a question more geared towards our founders out there that are building a B2B SaaS business, and marketing and sales is not always easy. So how are you marketing and selling your business?
[00:22:38.330] – Kristian
It’s a quick question. So come an additional context. So today, while I’m the CEO, and I focus majority of my efforts on corporate and sales and marketing. But when I started the company, I was wearing a fractional CFO hat, and I think I maxed out at seven clients before we grew to the point that I had to hire another CFO to take over my clients. But it complimented my personal experience with watching our CEO clients and how they approach sales and marketing. And effectively, I’ve adopted what I call lessons I saw, what I saw work when it didn’t work. And so I do think there’s a blueprint. I’m not necessarily saying it’s a one size fits all, but I think it works really well. And so I’d say anyone, whether it’s B2B SaaS or other who’s starting a company, your number one job is to make sales predictable. And that’s either because you have product-market fit or because the sales and marketing machine is set up to a point where you can go on vacation and leads still come in the top of the funnel and you can still close deals relative to your budget, what you’re anticipating to close.
[00:23:55.690] – Kristian
My opinion is that in the beginning, founders should be focusing all their time and energy and effort until they hit that predictable revenue milestone. Where I see founders go wrong is they get in their head that they need to go hire a VP of sales out of the gates. And Jason Lampin, who runs Saster, has a great term I read that I like. He says, Go hire a VP of sales and sprinkle some sales on it. And when I hear that, it’s like, Yeah, you’re a founder. I don’t think you’re lazy because you started a company and you’ve probably got hustling DNA, but I don’t think it works like that. A VP of sales intended to be a closer and manage AEs, not manage a pipeline. And so I think there is a path. And the path is founders know their business the best. They create a set of repeatable processes, and then you go out and hire two AEs, teach them, and confirm that you’re on the right track because they can imitate you and start hitting their quota. Once that team gets big enough, then you go hire a VP of sales. On the indirect front, I don’t think there’s anything new.
[00:25:08.420] – Kristian
I can say that the rest of the world doesn’t already know. People want to deal… Or maybe there is. People want to deal with people who are really sharp and know their stuff. And so I don’t have a marketing background, but I’ve done some reading. For your readers who are interested in the subject, I’d suggest checking out David Ogilvie. I understand he’s since passed away, but I understand David’s considered the father of modern marketing. And there’s a fun David Ogilvie story I heard a long time ago, but it really resonated with me. And I think it’s matured today with what you see a lot of people putting out white papers or blog posts talking about what they do. And basically, David was a big proponent of showcasing expertise. And so I think when he recently started his firm, he was It’s expensive. Good of David. But he had an owner who made shirts approach him and said, Look, David, I can’t afford you, but I’ll pay you what you can, but I’m going to encourage you to take my business because I’ll give you Free artistic control. You can do whatever you want. And that piqued David’s interest because he’s an artist or creator at heart.
[00:26:23.350] – Kristian
And so he took the business and created a campaign where he explained exactly how the shirts were made, and the founder lost it. What are you doing? Why are you telling my competitors how we make our shirts? But you don’t become the father of modern marketing without having some good sense. And the guy’s sales went through the roof. And Ogilvie’s logic was simply, look, people just want to buy great shirts, but no one’s saying why their shirts are going to last for ever or why you’re going to look as good as you are. So let me tell you why I’m making this out. Double stitching or using this fabric or using this cut makes you look better. And so I think today, that’s opportunities to showcase subject matter expertise are very valuable, whether that’s podcasts, webinars, white papers, what have you. And so we look to do that ourselves because I’ve realized that people just want to do business with competent people who care. And so I still have a big hand in sales and marketing. Coincidentally, I’m most likely hiring my two AEs this year. In terms of lead gen, we get a lot of referrals.
[00:27:47.240] – Kristian
So organic growth, but we also do a lot of email campaigns. Our open and close rates, I’d say, are I’m not an industry average, but the reality of it is my ROI is asymptotic. I mean, you can’t beat it. And the other thing is I don’t play golf. I don’t live in the Bay Area. I’m in Bozeman, Montana, and I like it here. And so this gives me reach, where otherwise I’d have to be on the plane adding the world’s carbon footprint, where I can be doing a lot more at my desk. That’s cool.
[00:28:24.800] – Sean
And knowing that you provide a five-star service, you create an I would say an easier lead gen process via referrals. If it was three-star, four-star, you’re not as apt to get those referrals. But if you’re going over and above, people are seeing that, they’re going to talk about you and be like, Hey, you should talk to Christian over here. He’s doing something different.
[00:28:47.990] – Kristian
Yes, agreed. Now, I think for your listeners who are in professional services, I still have room for improvement. I’m hardwired to be awesome, but I also I realize, entropy is real. For example, I don’t look at clients’ books before they sign an agreement. And so it’s very difficult for me to say, Hey, it may take us two months to clean it up. It may take half a year, depending on what we inherit. But I have to manage those expectations. So you could imagine, sometimes it can be hard to close business, where I’m like, Hey, this may take a long while. What do you mean it may take a long while? I don’t know what I’m going to get And if it passes prolog, it’s going to take a while to fix this. I have good problems to have. And I think, if anything, it just comes down to expectation setting. Yeah. And that, coupled with the fact, though, that psychology is real, and people always want to see Ws along the way. So I’ve learned, it’s like, well, all of our implementations are led by fractional CFOs, and we’re looking to provide evidence It’s that we’re making progress.
[00:30:01.370] – Kristian
But it’s like, how do you show someone that their payroll is now appropriately classified between cost of sales and the three OpEx buckets? It’s like, just show me my dashboard. And I appreciate it. I mean, if I was in their shoes, I would feel the same way. But I think that’s where, in my case, where our complexity lies is how do you fix somebody as absolutely quickly as you can? Understanding, I can’t staff to peak workload because I have to maintain some degree of margins as well.
[00:30:35.640] – Sean
Right on. That’s good. And then before we jump to the rapid fire round, what is one key takeaway you can give to the aspiring entrepreneurs out there?
[00:30:46.500] – Kristian
They’re a whole host. I’ll do two things. I recently came across someone who had summarized Nuggets of Wisdom, John Rockefeller shared with his son. They pulled it out a bunch of letters he had written in the early 1900s. And And I read it now once a week on my Saturdays because there’s a whole host of really good ones in there. Three in particular really resonate with me. Action creates opportunity. And so I think a lot of times people perseverate because they don’t have… The future is unknown, and so they what if themselves to death. And so I would say, I agree with John, just go do, even if you’re not 100 % clear, because the reality of it is if you do an amazing job, people will give you additional things to do? Because I don’t think people realize that an awesome, hardworking people are in the minority. And so people will gravitate towards it. I’m not going to get this right, but he says something to the effect of enthusiasm amplifies success. I’m an introvert, and I don’t want to say that I’m flat, but I tend towards the serious type. But I think there is truth to coming at things with high energy.
[00:31:58.780] – Kristian
And I can’t tell you why, but it makes a difference. And if you force me to give you an answer, I think when you’re a leader and people see that you’re passionate about what you’re doing, it can be contagious. But you have to be sincere, genuine. The third one is a little bit dark, but I like it. It says something to the effect of, To retreat is to surrender. Retreat will make you a slave. The war is inevitable. Let it come. I think there’s a couple of ways you can interpret that. But My sense is that I don’t think anyone… I think maybe in the back of my mind, we know that there’s no such thing as perfection, that the road is long and rocky, and there’s going to be bumps, and there’s going to be setbacks. But I think if you asked everyone to really just admit that that was the case, they’d agree. That’s the case. And so if that is true, why would we flinch? Why not embrace it? Why not say, Okay, figuratively speaking, if there’s going to be a fight, let’s go. What am I going to be afraid of?
[00:33:02.660] – Kristian
If I’m doing a great job and I’m going to work, okay, you want to fight? Let’s fight. And again, I think that I’m trying to encapsulate a spirit here versus suggesting, I’m going to fight, am I fighting about this?
[00:33:14.980] – Sean
Of course. We got you.
[00:33:17.300] – Kristian
My sense is that it’s a very healthy mindset to have because you realize that this is just life, and there’s things that are going to get thrown at you, and it’s better just to embrace them than it is to I jump out of the way.
[00:33:31.840] – Sean
I like it. Yeah, great. Great tips from Rockefeller. Awesome. All right, let’s dive into the rapid fire round. This is the part of the episode where we get to find out who Christian really is, if you can. Yeah, here we go. If you can, try I answer each question in about 15 seconds or less. You ready? All right. What is your favorite podcast?
[00:33:50.620] – Kristian
Joe Rogan.
[00:33:51.840] – Sean
Nice. All right. What is a recent book you read and would recommend?
[00:33:55.560] – Kristian
Alex Hormozy’s $100 Million Offers.
[00:33:58.480] – Sean
Kind of sitting on my desk over here.
[00:34:01.520] – Kristian
All right.
[00:34:03.050] – Sean
Favorite movie?
[00:34:04.400] – Kristian
Indiana Jones, The Riders: The Lost Art.
[00:34:06.630] – Sean
I’m going with the first one. Nice call. All right. A few more serious questions here. What is the worst advice you ever received?
[00:34:14.160] – Kristian
Oh, boy. It wasn’t so much advice as it was a comment someone made to me that just managed to stick with me. And I don’t think she’s ever going to listen to this. I won’t worry about hurting her feelings, but she knows I love her with all my heart. I remember in high school, I told my mom I was going to beat the high school’s half-mile record, and she told me I couldn’t do it. I now understand as a parent that she told me that because she didn’t want my feelings to be hurt if I didn’t accomplish it. And for your listeners or parents, I think we can all appreciate that. But I think it was just a realization that let the cards fall where they may. Whatever you want to set your sights on, go for it. I love it. I didn’t break You didn’t.
[00:35:00.790] – Sean
I was going to ask you, did you break the record?
[00:35:03.910] – Kristian
I didn’t. That was a second off, but oh, well. All right.
[00:35:06.950] – Sean
Hey in a mile. Not bad.
[00:35:09.040] – Kristian
All right.
[00:35:10.320] – Sean
What is the best advice you have received?
[00:35:12.520] – Kristian
Oh, gosh. Probably the flip side of that. If you have confidence in yourself, you don’t have to have all the answers and just go for it. Whether that’s in relationships, very fortunate, I have an amazing wife, whether that’s setting personal goals for yourself or business. I’ve been very fortunate to have people in my life who’ve been very encouraging. And the reoccurring theme is, Hey, just go for it. And put everything you got into it and put it in God’s hands if you have to. But one day we’re all going to be pushing daisy, so go for it. I mean, being in the scope of being responsible, but go for it. Right. Love it.
[00:36:01.810] – Sean
All right. And last question here is the time machine question. If you could go back in time to give your younger self advice, what age would you visit and what would you say?
[00:36:10.420] – Kristian
I would probably visit myself once I got out of the service, and I would have said, go start a business immediately, even if I was a plumbing or electrical contractor or something. But I would have started my first business prior to 2017. All right. So early, closer to the turn of the decade. It’s a bit personal, only so much as I realized that being a business owner suits my personality, I realized that’s not for everybody. Also, it would probably be a separate conversation in itself, but My kids were a lot younger. They’re all out of the house today. And it’s hard when you have a spouse and you have kids because they do require your time. I have an opinion that if you’ve effectively agreed to enter those relationships, you must give them your time. But all things being equal. And I know there are a number of people in my close circle know I feel strong about being a business owner for a whole host of reasons, and I would have started it a lot sooner.
[00:37:15.950] – Sean
We’re going to unpack that within a separate episode, I’m sure. No, this has been awesome, Christian. Where can the audience reach you?
[00:37:24.050] – Kristian
So if you go out to the website, it’s fin, F-I-N, Strat, S-T-R-A-T. And then mgMT, short for management. Com. And then, Sean, as a courtesy for your listeners, if they go to the Contact Us page, you can see there’s a drop down on there. It says, Book a free CFO consultation. If anyone who’s venture-back, B2B, SaaS, would like to take advantage of some of our expertise. They’re more than welcome. No expectations, no charge. Happy to listen and give feedback. Awesome.
[00:37:54.580] – Sean
All right, Christian. Thank you so much for your time.
[00:37:56.800] – Kristian
Thank you, Sean.
[00:37:57.820] – Sean
We’ll see you.
[00:37:58.550] – Kristian
Take care.
[00:37:59.740] – Sean
Hey, I’d like to say thank you for checking out this podcast. I know there’s a lot of other podcasts out there you could be listening to, so thanks for spending some time with me. And if you have a moment, please head over to Apple Podcasts and leave a five-star review. The more reviews we get, especially five-star reviews, the higher this podcast will rank in Apple. So thanks for doing that. And remember, this show is for entertainment purposes only. If you heard any stocks mentioned on this podcast, please do not buy or sell those stocks based solely on what you hear. Thanks for your time. We’ll see you.