S03E07 – Work Hard, Play Hard: Work life balance


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I’m a firm believer in working hard and playing hard.  To illustrate that point I recorded this week’s episode while hiking near Mont Tremblant, Quebec.  I was joined by my two favourite girls, my wife Allie and “step-daughter” Alex Byrne.

As we snowshoed through the fresh snow we talked a lot about what mattered in life.  I don’t need my people to work 100 hours a week.  I need them to do a good job.  I run a task oriented business that emphasizes success over punching a clock.  Too many businesses are exactly the opposite.

S03E06 The Tables Have Turned with Nikki part 2


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This is easily one of the best conversations I’ve ever recorded. Business guru and relationship expert Nikki Pett has once again turned the tables on me. In this part of our conversation we get into the nitty-gritty of how to grow your business through every stage of its development.

I share with Nikki how important it was to hire a personal assistant when my business was still young. The reason was simple. I needed to focus every waking hour on generating more revenue. Laundry and making meals was not making me money. It cost a lot but in the end my revenue doubled within the first year!

We talk about how important it is to surround yourself with like-minded individuals. If you’re the smartest person in the room, you’re in the wrong room. Surround yourself with people that are better than you and you’re going to get better!

S02E27 – What the hell is a building consultant anyways?


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Of all the job titles Tim has heard thrown around over the years “building consultant” is definitely the most confusing. Stephen Emberley from Tri-Tech Pinnacle Group is here to explain. Together, Tim and Steve talk about why so many job sites are torn apart by internal bickering.  They also debate the importance of firing clients who aren’t working out.

INSTAGRAM: @TimByrneAlmostLive
TWITTER: @TimByrneAlmost
FACEBOOK: Facebook.com/TimByrneAlmostLive

 

S02E25 – Why being an asshole is bad for business


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Tim is joined this week by Doug Macy from Trust 1 Security. The pair talk about how to create a unique identity in a crowded marketplace. Tim has tried to center his business around his own personality. Making yourself the brand is a great way to generate some name recognition but it has it’s downsides too. Doug thinks Tim has succeeded because he is fiercely loyal and refuses to abandon his friends when time’s get tough. “If someone falls and your don’t offer a hand, you’re just an asshole.” Tim says.

SOCIAL: @TimByrneAlmostLive
WEBSITE: TimByrneAlmostLive.com

S02E24 – Communication Breakdown: Why nobody cares about your email


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In the age of digital connection there we’re forgetting some basic facts. Your closest relationships are with the people that you actually meet in person. Next come the people that are willing to answer your phone call. Way down at the bottom are people you only interact with via email or social media. Tim is joined by Byrne On Demand sales rep Doug Bellar to discuss how to really connect with your clients.

S02E23 – What Keeps Every Business Owner Up at Night with Sanj Patel


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Striking out on your own can be terrifying. It’s way easier just to stick with an employer and collect a cheque. Today on the show Tim talks with Sanj Patel, the owner of Ignis Building Solutions in Toronto. Tim and Sanj are on opposite ends of the entrepreneurial spectrum. Sanj is just starting out while Tim has been in the game for decades. Their conversation is going to be super-interesting to anyone thinking about starting their own business.

S02E22 – Cushman and Wakefield with David Anderson


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David Anderson has worked for decades in the property management and acquisition business. He’s the perfect bellwether to figure out the state of the economy. He and Tim debate the likelihood of a recession and where the industry is headed.

S02E21 – Death of a Salesman with Andy Rutledge


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Being a salesman sucks. Especially if you’ve just started in a new territory or with a new company. By month six you’re ready to quit. You’re depressed. You’re frazzled. You have no one to turn too. Now you do. On today’s episode Tim shares how you can get over the hump and really succeed.

He’s joined this week by Andy Rutledge, a relatively new salesman at Stadia.  He is in the midst of dealing with the desert that is month six at a new sales job.  Tim provides some counsel to his younger counterpart.

The problem is that success for a sales person is hard to see in the moment.  Success means money and even if you’ve been making some deals you won’t see the fruits of that labour for at least another three months.  That means you have to have a robust sense of self.  You have to believe that you’re succeeding.  Otherwise the voices in your head are going to take over an make your life miserable.

 

S02E20 – QuadReal with Cheryl Gray Part 2


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Cheryl Gray is a titan in the Toronto real estate industry. In the second part of our conversation we discuss the looming recession and about how to build real relationships in a digitized age.

I was also extremely eager to talk with Cheryl about how young companies can get a foothold in the industry. Cheryl is untouchable to the average trade or vendor. She explained how an up-and-coming company can get the attention of a big player like Quadreal. This is must have information for start-up companies!

S02E15 – Close Canada Post FOREVER!


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Tim is joined by Anthony Vinzi to talk about a bunch of things affecting Canadians this week.  Canada Post is in the midst of a rotating strike across the country.  This raises the question:  What’s the point of Canada Post anyway?  Our heroes talk about why small business needs to get ready for a recession.  And the pair savage Trudeau’s plan to allow the census to access your tax records.

S02E09 – Tim vs. Sarah – Toronto Votes 2018


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The race to become Toronto’s next mayor is grinding towards it’s inevitable conclusion on October 22nd.  The race started with dozens of candidates. That number has been whittled down to just four viable candidates.  One of the more unexpected survivors in this political deathmatch is an unassuming house mom named Sarah Climenhaga.  Sarah doesn’t have the usual political credentials of most candidates.  That’s what made her so interesting to Tim who invited her onto this week’s episode.

Sarah is a community volunteer who is busy raising her three kids.  She worked previously with the World Wildlife Fund but wasn’t particularly political.  She decided to enter the race because she was unhappy with John Tory’s absentee governance of the city.  She is a strong believer in collaboration and doesn’t subscribe to any particular party platform.  “I agree with fair wages which is an NDP focus but I also believe in wisely spending tax money which is a Conservative principal,” she says.

Sarah’s down the middle approach flies in the face of Tim’s more libertarian ideas.  Tim is a strong proponent in reducing the size of government. He also thinks Toronto business is overtaxed, a proposition that Sarah doesn’t necessarily agree with.  She does say that the pace of decision making is far too slow at city hall.   

They say that it takes as much as $2 million to run for city hall in Toronto.  Sarah is running a campaign with far less money than that. She says her biggest strength is her ability to connect with regular voters and to actually work with people of wildly different political ideas.  We’ll find out if her platform will succeed Oct 22nd.  

S02E05 – The Naked Truth (On Being Too Expensive)


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There are few things more painful in life than being dragged into a corporate workshop.  That is until you go to a Tim Byrne corporate workshop. Instead of the usual droning on about sales projections and team building you get a Tasmanian Devil whirlwind of foul-mouthed truth speak.  The good folks at Curb Signs Inc. made the fateful decision to invite our hero to their office in Aurora to deliver a lecture on all things sales.  

“Everything you do is too expensive.”  Every sales person hears that every day.  But that’s bullshit, according to Tim. Well, most of the time anyways.  33% of the time you’re not too expensive compared to your competitor. You’re too expensive for their budget.  It’s all about how they build their budgets.  Property managers will always move numbers around to make it look like they’re saving their clients money.  Often times they will take money out of the budget for your work and stick it somewhere else – leaving you with nothing. So when they tell you you’re too expensive it has nothing to do with your estimate.  The other 33% of the time you lost the job because they don’t like you. It’s only that last 33% where you will actually lose a job because you were undercut by a competitor.

Building relationships is by far the hardest job a sales person has to master.  Sales people

will do anything to avoid having to go to yet another social function where they awkwardly stand in the corner talking to people they already know.  Those events are about building new relationships!  The easiest thing about the job is writing the purchase order or bidding the job.  Shaking hands and meeting people is fucking awful. Cold calling is the worst of the worst.  But it’s the only way you’re going to be successful so you better get good at it and quick.The only thing your organization is going to need in the next few decades is people that know how to talk to people.  Most of the jobs in big companies are going to be automated. Building relationships is the only thing matters.    

Timology 4 – Tim’s Tips for Sales Guys


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Tim needed an audience for this week’s episode so he invited Stadia sales guys Dylan and Andy into the studio.  The three had just attended a sales seminar together.  There was plenty Tim liked about workshop but, naturally, there was also a lot he disagreed with.  So he invited the boys to join him for a post-mortem.

Tim says that a good salesman focuses on what the customer wants.  People in sales too often worry about what they want.  Dylan has been working sales for Stadia for 2 years while Andy has just started working for the company.  Tim says there are about 5 tiers of experience that a sales guy will move through during his career.  In the first 3 months of a sales career everyone is totally focused on making as much money as possible.  The problem is that creating new clients often means giving away free favours.  The problem is a new sales person has no favours to give away.  It’s all about who you know when it comes to favours.  It takes at least 2 or 3 years to get there.  Those first 3 months are a long haul.

Sales workshops always emphasize the importance of knowing everything about the product that you’re selling.  Tim thinks that’s a lot of horseshit.  You don’t need to know much about your product.  You do need to know a lot about people, the resources you have around you and how to make them fit together.  If you can put a sentence together and communicate an idea in 30 seconds or less, you’ll do just fine.  In the first level of a sales career you need to learn how to communicate, how to pick-up on social cues and begin to build your network.

As you go from level 1 to level 2 the most important thing you can do is try to gain knowledge.  That might sound easy but it’s harder than it sounds.  Most people are asking questions not to learn something but to defy authority.  Especially in a male dominated industry like construction there is a lot of bravado.  Try and shut-up and listen once and a while!  You’re going to have a meltdown around 9 months in when you realize you don’t know what you’re doing.  Read, listen to podcasts and watch YouTube videos constantly.  You have to be self-aware and be willing to recognize what you have to improve.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Timology 1 – The Secret to Being a Great Sales Guy


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Tim is excited to launch a brand new series for the summer.  His “Timology” series will reveal the secrets of great salesman.  Tim came by this knowledge the hard way – years of failing. For over 20 years Tim scratched and crawled his way to building a successful business.  Along the way he developed a winning strategy for selling his products and services.

Tim says that three are three facets to being great in sales.  Those are relationship building, marketing and accounting. In today’s episode Tim talks about the importance of building a relationship with a client.  Tim likens building those relationships to being a successful political candidate. You have to shake one hundred hands to get one vote. The math is similar in sales.  You have to introduce yourself to one hundred people to get one sale.

Building a relationship with a client depends on personal contact.  Tim insists on taking a potential client out for a drink or a meal before taking them on.  If they don’t have time for that Tim isn’t interested in working with them. You need to become friends with your clients otherwise you won’t be able to depend on them for future business.

There is a lot of negativity around sales.  There is a common idea that sales people are scumbags who will say anything to get your money.  And to be sure there are plenty of guys like that out there. Tim takes an opposite approach. If you are the only one walking away happy you’re doing it wrong.  You don’t just bid jobs in order to bid jobs. You have a moral obligation to give the client a fair price.