C-Suite Network™

Accounting Mergers & Acquisition Negotiating

Business Valuation Calculator

Types of Business Valuations

Method Description
Discounted Cash Flow (DCF) Future cash flows are discounted back to present value
Comparable Company Analysis Comparing valuation metrics with similar businesses
Market Capitalization Stock price multiplied by total number of shares
Book Value Net asset value from the balance sheet
Liquidation Value Value of assets if sold individually
Earnings Multiplier Earnings multiplied by an industry-specific factor
Replacement Cost Cost to replace all assets
Revenue Multiple Revenue multiplied by an industry-specific factor
Price-to-Earnings (P/E) Ratio Market value per share divided by earnings per share

Why Business Valuations Are Important

  • Investor Confidence: A solid business valuation can instill confidence among investors, potentially leading to increased investment.
  • Strategic Planning: Understanding the value of a business helps in making informed decisions for future growth and restructuring.
  • Mergers & Acquisitions: Accurate valuation is crucial for negotiating deals and understanding the fair market value of a business.
  • Succession Planning: Valuations are critical for understanding the value of the business for potential succession or sale.
  • Access to Funding: Lenders or investors often require a business valuation to assess the risk associated with the business.
  • Tax Purposes: Understanding the value of a business can be essential for various tax-related transactions and compliance.
  • Employee Stock Ownership Plans (ESOPs): Valuation helps in setting the price for stock when offering stock options to employees.
  • Litigation and Dispute Resolution: In legal cases like divorce or partnership disputes, a valuation can help in reaching a fair settlement.
  • Market Positioning: Knowing the value of the business relative to competitors provides insights into market positioning and competitive advantage.

Having an accurate business valuation is crucial for various aspects of managing, selling, or investing in a business. It provides a comprehensive view of a company’s health, growth potential, and overall viability can be as simple as a business valuation calculator in excel to as complex as a professional valuation by firm or expert!

Business valuation services near me?

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Best Practices Economics Negotiating

How much should I pay myself?

How much should I pay myself?

When people go into business for themselves as a Sole Proprietor, they usually comingle the business’ funds. Meaning they are using Business funds for personal items and personal funds for business items. Sole Prop is the easiest way to start doing business, however, if you choose to setup a Corporation or an LLC, these habits need to change. You and the company are no longer the same. The two of you become 2 separate individuals. The company’s money is not your money, and your money is not the company’s money.
So, the question usually after setting up the Corporation or LLC is: How do I get the money out of the company? How much should I be paying myself? What can the company cover?
The Answer is: You take only what you need, to cover Food, Clothing, Shelter, Personal Entertainment, and Insurance. Let the company pick up the rest. The company should be covering things like, Business Trips, Cell Phones, Internet, Home office expenses, etc. You will never take vacations again. Vacations are not tax deductible, however, business trips are. You will need to make sure that everything is documented. I will discuss what your company should be covering in another article.
Now, usually in the 1st or 2nd years of operation, a business owner has no idea what the company is going to make, so they might take money out as an owner draw rather than a salary. However, around the 3-year mark, the IRS will figure that you have some idea as to how much the company will be making and require you to start taking some sort of salary out of the company.
In addition, if you want your company to cover health insurance, contribute to a qualified retirement plan such as an IRA or SoloK, you will need to be drawing a salary from the company. The contributions will be withdrawn by the payroll company out of each paycheck.
Now you might be thinking, if I need additional money from the company, how do I take it out. Well, if you have an “S” elected Corporation or LLC, you will receive distributions on a monthly, quarterly or annual basis. This will add to your income but won’t be subject to withholdings or self-employment taxes. If your Corporation or LLC is taxed as a “C” elected company, you can either take a dividend which the Corporation has already paid the taxes and now you the individual will also pay taxes. This is commonly referred to as double taxation.
However, your company could loan the money to you personally, which is not considered taxable income. You would then pay the company back out of the wages you take. This can be used as an Asset Protection mechanism. The company, just like any other lender could place a lien against whatever asset you may be purchasing. This will protect the asset from any liability that might affect you personally. This does require a formal written promissory note between you and the company to perfect the process.

Branding Growth Negotiating

Why These 3 Experiential Marketing Strategies Work

We’ve discussed why experiential marketing attracts new consumers, increases brand loyalty, drives sales, and delivers attractive ROIs. Experiential marketing is one of the most successful strategies a marketing team can utilize. This strategy will likely increase in popularity as consumers are tired of being “sold to” by endless one-way communication. However, despite its successful track record, experiential marketing is also challenging to get right. In this post, we will explain three different experiential marketing types and their key takeaways.

Product Sampling

Product sampling is the strategy most of us know. Brands typically hire brand ambassadors, people who mimic the demographic of their target audience, to hand out samples or get consumers to try something. Typically, product sampling occurs at trade shows, concerts, festivals, fairs, sporting events, retail outlets, and even busy street corners using pop-up booths and lounges. However, it can also work in e-commerce too — for example, a company can throw in a free sample or two when a customer places an online order. Another benefit is gaining invaluable insights into what consumers think of your product, which you can share with your design team.

Instead of telling consumers how great your product tastes, smells, or feels, they can try it for themselves without any obligation to buy. Biore, a skincare company that makes bandage-like pore cleansing strips, hit the jackpot in 1997 when they were a sponsor at Lilith Faire, a nationwide concert tour featuring female artists. Lilith Fair attracted a mostly female audience between 18 and 34 — Biore’s exact target audience for the pore cleansing strips. Brand ambassadors walked around handing out free strips. The buzz and free press generated by photos of women rocking out a concert with white strips on their noses catapulted the new company into stardom, vastly exceeding its sales projections.

Key Takeaway for Product Sampling: Product sampling can be an exceptionally successful way to attract new customers, increase brand awareness and enhance loyalty when executed properly. (Learn more on our blog post, “What Does It Take to Create Effective Product Sampling Campaigns?). It’s essential to understand where your target audience is going to be.

Many brands make the “spray and pray” mistake — wasting time and money distributing free samples to consumers who have no need or interest in their products.

Product Showcases

Similar to product sampling, demonstrating how your product works, feels, and sounds is an excellent way to allow consumers to experience your brand. For example, we launched a product showcase for ISOPURE, a high-performance sports nutrition company, at the GoPro Mountain Games in Vail, CO. We built an inviting pop-up lounge with comfy couches and our skilled brand ambassadors invited consumers to create custom samples of ISOPURE’s sports drink products. The campaign worked because we chose the right place, time, and message for ISOPURE’s target audience!

With virtual and augmented reality technology, you don’t even need to have your product physically present. For example, Audi launched a highly successful virtual reality campaign where adults were reminded of how fun it was to create sand structures and then drive toy vehicles around them. Each participant built a course in a real sandbox, and then a depth-sensing camera scanned their creation. Next, participants donned a virtual reality headset and sat in a driving simulator that mimicked how the new Audi Q5 handled the bumps and jumps in the custom-built course, including realistic sound effects.

The initial VR experience launched at a premier Audi dealership in Norway and then went on the road to other locations. Norwegian Audi dealers reported a 57% increase in visitors during the tour, and the Q5 became Audi’s best-selling model in Norway.

Key Takeaway for Product Showcases: The product showcase must do more than display the product — it must generate buzz and provide an authentic, memorable experience that allows consumers to engage with your brand.

Consumers can spot a gimmick a mile away, so your engagement must feel authentic and have the right time, place, and message to connect with your target audience.

Brand Activation & Event Sponsorship

Another way to engage with your target audience is by sponsoring an event — a sporting, music, community, or charity event. However, event sponsorship no longer means simply paying to display your logo before and during the event. Whether you’re sponsoring an event or introducing a new brand or product, you want to make a splash and “wow” your target audience.

The annual SXSW festival in Austin, TX, is a veritable guidebook for how to sponsor events using experiential marketing. From parking-lot-roller skating rinks (VICE) to giant wave pools (TNT), photo and video opps sitting at Michael Scott’s from The Office desk and a Project Runway experience (Comcast NBCUniversal) and a garden with a 20’ tree bar (Amazon Prime Video), the multi-day festival is just teeming with innovative, exciting opportunities where brands engage consumers. SXSW is extremely popular because attendees get to experience fun, surprising, delightful activities beyond just watching music performances — activities that get a lot of free press coverage and get shared on social media, allowing brands to reach a much vaster audience than simply the event attendees.

Red Bull is the master at event sponsorship and always sponsors experiences and events that align with its extreme action/sports reputation. However, even brands that don’t immediately seem to correlate to an event can produce a successful experiential marketing sponsorship. For example, butter maker Land O’Lakes launched a highly successful activation at SXSW using references to Nicolaus Copernicus, the 16th-century astronomer who discovered the Earth rotates the sun, not the other way around, making the sun the center of everything. Copernicus also had a reputation for being a truth-seeker, so Land O’Lakes capitalized on that angle. It promoted the idea that the company was seeking the truth about our food system and hosted several events and activities to match that theme.

However, brands must choose suitable events for sponsorship and activation. Not only should the brand and event “personalities” match or support one another, but they must also match in size and scope. A small company won’t likely see much ROI sponsoring a large event, and vice versa. For example, a massive company like Coca-Cola won’t get much exposure sponsoring a small community event. A smaller company will see a much better ROI sponsoring or activating at a niche event where its target audience will be, and participation costs are much lower.

Key Takeaway for Event Sponsorship & Brand Activation: Choose events that match your size, scope, and brand image for sponsorships and brand activations.

Get creative and find ways to engage your audience in surprising ways.

These are just three experiential marketing campaigns. Stay tuned because we’ll discuss more experiential marketing campaigns in our next post, including cause marketing, mobile tours, VIP hospitality, and special events.

Need some help with launching an experiential marketing program? Leverage our 25+ years of experience and expertise in creating impactful, successful programs.

Advice Capital Entrepreneurship Growth Investing Negotiating Negotiations

Get Funded: Overcome Rejection To Reach Success


The early stages of any entrepreneurial journey are fraught with excitement, anticipation, and a healthy dose of uncertainty and intense fear of failure.

You have a groundbreaking idea, a vision and a burning desire to turn that potential into a reality. But there’s one major catch. You need to raise money to fund your new venture and growth potential.

As you step onto the road to getting funded, you quickly realize that it’s not all smooth sailing. In fact at times, it doesn’t feel like sailing at all. It feels like you fell out of the boat without a life preserve and it’s a daily struggle just to keep your head above the water.

Welcome to the jungle of getting funded. Here’s some advice and condolences on the journey of overcoming the rejection of getting funded and some tips to get back in the boat and sail your way in the sunset of success.




Being Rejected by Investors Isn’t For the Faint of Heart, But it’s a Necessary Right of Passage

In the quest for funding, rejection becomes a familiar companion. You reach out to potential investors, eager to share your passion and the immense potential of your venture. You meticulously prepare your pitch deck, honing every slide, crafting each word with care into the depth of the midnight hours with blood shot eyes. Your heart races as you go to meet with your first investor, ready to make your case with eager and naïve anticipation.

But then, the dreaded words echo in your ears: “We’re sorry, but we’re not interested at this time.”

Rejection stings, like a sharp arrow piercing through your armor of confidence. It’s easy to feel disheartened, to question your abilities, and to doubt the very essence of your idea. You may even feel like giving up and going back to your dreaded day job.

But take heart, for rejection is not the end of your journey. It is merely a detour, a bump in the road that tests your resolve and fuels your determination. Many successful entrepreneurs have faced countless rejections before finding the right investor who believed in their vision. Remember – every rejection brings you closer to that pivotal “yes.”



Tips to Overcome the Sting of Rejection and to Get Funded

1. Reframe Rejection as Free and Valuable Feedback:

Instead of dwelling on rejection, embrace it as an opportunity for growth. Seek feedback from investors who turned you down. Listen attentively, absorb their insights, and use them to refine your pitch.

Constructive criticism is the compass that guides you towards improvement.


2. Build Relationships:

Funding is not just about the numbers; it’s about the people. Invest time in building relationships with potential investors. Attend industry events, network with like-minded individuals, and seek out mentors who can provide guidance. The power of a strong network should never be underestimated.

I’ve made my career out of building a large network of connections, and leveraging them to open doors I never knew where possible.

3. Showcase Traction and Milestones:

Investors want to see progress and tangible results. Demonstrate traction by highlighting key milestones you’ve achieved since your last pitch. This could be user growth, revenue generated, strategic partnerships forged, or product iterations. Concrete evidence of progress instills confidence in investors and makes your venture more attractive.

Don’t be shy about taking credit no matter how big or small the progress.


4. Clearly Articulate Your Unique Selling Proposition:

What sets your venture apart from the competition? What problem are you solving, and why is your solution superior? Craft a compelling narrative that conveys your unique selling proposition with clarity and conviction. Investors are drawn to stories that resonate and inspire. The difference between competition in any industry is the ability to articulate your brand story.

Test your pitch to as many people as you can and constantly remove any friction to irrelevant or vague slides and talking points.

To articulate your unique selling proposition make sure you can answer the following 9 questions specifically:

  1. What problem are you solving and
  2. How significant is the problem?
  3. How is your solution different or unique from anything else on the market?
  4. How will you generate revenue? What’s the business model?
  5. How have you proven the problem you are solving is real to the target audience?
  6. What is your financial outlook?
  7. What is your funding requirement?
  8. What will you do with the funds to grow the business?
  9. How will the experience of your founding team aid to the success of the launch?

Don’t forget to highlight and showcase the experience of your team!


5. Showcase the Team:

Investors invest in people as much as they invest in ideas. Highlight the expertise and experience of your team members. Showcase their accomplishments and demonstrate how their collective skills will drive the success of your venture.

A strong, cohesive team inspires confidence and reassures investors of your ability to execute.


6. Leverage Warm Introductions:

Cold emails and unsolicited pitches have their place, but warm introductions hold greater weight. Tap into your network to find connections who can vouch for your credibility and introduce you to potential investors.

A warm introduction opens doors that may otherwise remain closed.

7. Persistence and Resilience:

The road to funding is rarely a swift journey. It is paved with setbacks, disappointments, and unforeseen obstacles. But it is those who persist, who summon the strength to rise after each fall, that ultimately reach the destination.

Embrace resilience as your steadfast companion and let it propel you forward.




The road to getting funded is a winding path, often fraught with rejection and unforeseen challenges. But it is also a road of incredible opportunity, where determination,

The road to getting funded is a winding path, often fraught with rejection and unforeseen challenges. But it is also a road of incredible opportunity, where determination, resilience, and strategic thinking pave the way to success. As you navigate this journey, remember that every rejection is not a reflection of your worth or the potential of your idea. It is merely a stepping stone, a lesson in resilience, and an invitation to refine your approach.

Throughout your entrepreneurial voyage, it’s crucial to reframe rejection as valuable feedback. Embrace it as an opportunity to learn, grow, and iterate. Seek insights from those who turned you down and use their perspectives to sharpen your pitch and enhance your offering.

Each rejection brings you one step closer to finding the right investor who shares your vision and understands the true potential of your venture.


Advice Negotiating Parenting

How Do You Discipline a Child That Doesn’t Listen? Tips from a Parenting Expert

As a parenting expert, one of the most common concerns that I hear from parents is how to discipline their children when they don’t listen. It can be frustrating and overwhelming to feel like you’re losing control, especially when you’ve tried different methods to get your child to follow your instructions. However, it’s important to recognize that controlling our children’s behavior isn’t the answer. Instead, we need to approach discipline with consideration and understanding of our children’s needs and capacities and skills for managing their emotions and responses.

Here are some tips on how to manage when your child doesn’t listen to what you say:

  • Have a solution-focused mindset: When approaching a meltdown, is there a specific time of day when your child is falling apart? Are they tired? Hungry? Need some closeness? you can begin to see positive changes in your child’s behavior when you support them to meet their needs and develop skills to regulate their emotions.
  • Address underlying issues: Sometimes, a child’s behavior is related to an underlying issue such as ADHD. If you suspect that your child may have ADHD, consult a healthcare professional for guidance.
  • Identify the root cause of “disrespectful” behavior: It’s important to address the underlying causes: Is your child feeling neglected or ignored? Are they struggling with a difficult situation at school? By addressing the root cause of their behavior, you can help your child develop better problem-solving skills and improve their behavior. To keep your own feelings in balance avoid thinking judgmentally and stay curious.
  • Approach the situation calmly: Yelling and losing your temper will only undermine your child’s self-confidence and lead to further behavior issues. Take a deep breath, apply the oxygen mask to you first, and approach the situation calmly and assertively when you’re ready.
  • Be flexible with your approach: Be open to trying new methods and approaches to see what works best for your child. Guidance approach to discipline is about supporting your kids to be the masters of their emotions and for them to learn how to be present to the outer voices in their world and speak up assertively for any conflicts occuring inside them so that they can meet their needs too.

Remember, disciplining your child is not about controlling their behavior, but about finding a balance between their desires and your expectations. Healthy and positive ways to discipline your child include setting clear expectations, catching them doing it right and acknowledging, highlighting and verifying that, and modeling the behavior you want to see. By approaching discipline with consideration and understanding, you can create a more positive and close relationship with your child.

So, are you struggling with a child who doesn’t listen to you? It can be frustrating for any parent, but there are ways to discipline your child without resorting to harsh punishment. The first step is to identify what works and what doesn’t. Observe your child’s behavior and see if there is a particular time of day when they are more receptive to problem solving. The rule of thumb is to listen to their side when they are resistant to your directions. Listening to them doesn’t mean you agree with their perspective, but, ignoring their perspective and repeating your own is guaranteed not to work.

It’s also important to keep in mind that some children may have underlying issues, such as ADHD, or an irritation in their nervous systems from an allergy to gluten or red dye or sugar or dairy, inflammation too can make it difficult for them to focus, think clearly, and follow instructions. If you suspect that your child may have an underlying condition, seek the advice of a healthcare professional who can provide proper diagnosis and treatment. Getting a neuropsych evaluation is always helpful!

When your child is being “disrespectful” it’s important to identify the root cause of their behavior and address it directly. Are they feeling neglected or ignored? Are they struggling with a difficult situation at school? By addressing the underlying cause of their behavior, you can help your child develop better problem-solving skills and that gives rise to feeling better and will improve their overall behavior.

Losing your temper and yelling at your child may seem like the only way to get their attention, but this can damage their self-esteem and lead to more behavioral problems. Not to mention, it can result in you feeling yucky about you! Instead, be assertive about meeting your needs and approach the situation with a clear mind.

Remember that discipline is not a one-size-fits-all approach. What works for one child may not work for another, so be open to trying new approaches. Healthy and positive ways to discipline your child include setting clear expectations, providing acknowledgement, and modeling good behavior. Setting clear expectations helps your child understand what is expected of them and encourages them to meet those expectations. Acknowledgment can help build your child’s self-confidence as they learn to be more aware of their own traits and capacities. Modeling good behavior sets a positive example for your child to follow.

Disciplining a child who doesn’t listen requires a solution-focused approach. By observing what works, addressing underlying issues, and utilizing healthy and positive discipline methods, you can develop a positive relationship with your child and help them become confident and well-behaved individuals.

Love and blessings,


P.S. Looking for more weekly guidance? Join me in my private Facebook group for tips every Tuesday!



Advice Marketing Negotiating

Is Your Small Business Ready to Franchise? . . . A Checklist of Basic Considerations

Many owners of small to medium-sized businesses dream of turning their companies into franchises, and with good reason. Becoming a franchise could let your company expand rapidly into new regions, become a nationally recognized brand, increase your bottom line, and offer other meaningful returns.

But the reality is, not all companies are ready to transition and become franchises. Another reality is that a number of companies try to become franchises but fail in that attempt because they are not prepared.

With that said, what are some of the basic assets you should have in place before you try to franchise your business? Here is a checklist for you to review.

Do you have the following?

  • A proven business model – You should have a proven business model – preferably one that has been successful in multiple locations. If you do, you have a business model that can be replicated in different markets.
  • Strong profits and financial stability – If your company is not performing strongly, don’t expect a franchise structure to cure that problem. Your company should have a strong financial track record with positive cash flow and a healthy balance sheet. This will provide potential franchisees with confidence that they will succeed.
  • Brand recognition – A well differentiated brand is a big consideration. A strong brand is essential for a successful franchise system. Your company should have established brand recognition that can continue to expand.
  • A well-defined customer base – Do you know who your customers are and why they buy from you? If you don’t, you will have a difficult time supporting your franchises as they attract new customers and repeat business.
  • Excellent training – Work with a training development company and create excellent training programs before you start to sell franchises. When prospective franchise owners see that you will train them in all aspects of running your franchise, they will have greater confidence because they will see you are invested in their success.
  • Committed leadership and management teams – The company should have strong leaders who are committed to the success of the franchise system. These executives should have a clear vision for the future of the company and the franchise system.

And Remember, You Can’t Do It All!

Yes, you built your business, and nobody knows it as well as you do. But please be modest enough to accept the fact that you might not personally have all the knowledge that your new franchise will need to succeed. I would encourage you to bring in a franchise consultant – if not permanently, for at least long enough to get your new franchise off to a strong start. And build a top franchise management team that brings you all the legal, business, accounting, supply chain, marketing, and technology knowledge you need to be stronger than your competitors in the marketplace.

Getting the expertise you need can make your franchise a stunning success on the franchising landscape.

Evan Hackel, Entrepreneur, Author, Speaker, Podcaster

As author, speaker and Evan Hackel has been instrumental in launching more than 20 businesses and has managed a portfolio of brands with systemwide sales of more than $5 billion. He is the creator of Ingaged Leadership, is author of the book Ingaging Leadership Meets the Younger Generation and is a thought leader in the fields of leadership and success.

Evan is the CEO of Ingage Consulting, Delta Payment Systems, and an advisor to The Learning Network (formerly Tortal Training). Reach Evan at ehackel@ingage.net, 781-820 7609 or visit www.evanhackelspeaks.com

Economics Entrepreneurship Growth Investing Negotiating Skills Wealth

The Top 10 Times Mark Cuban Called Out the Sleaziest Frauds on Shark Tank

Hearing the phrase “you’re such a con-artist!” coming from the lips of a potential investor during a live pitch is defiantly not a good look (especially when it happens on live TV broadcasting to millions of viewers).

It happened 10 times when Mark Cuban publicly called out scams when he smelled fish oil on ABC’s Shark Tank.



Sharktank is the place where people’s dreams can become a reality or a total nightmare…

The television program features some of the world’s most successful investors which include: Mark Cuban, Keavin O’leary, Daymond John, Barbara Corcoran, and Lori Greiner.

Since the show debuted in 2009, there have been some pretty memorable pitches. Here’s a video that shows some of the most savage shark tank moments on that were called out at total scams.

Mark Cuban goes head to head with these entrepreneurs, even questioning their ethics. Here’s the 10 times Shark Tank’s Mark Cuban calls out the sleaziest frauds on Shark Tank.


So awkward…







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