Episode 8: Vincent Valeri – How To Avoid Conflict In A Family Business

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Gold Nuggets

  1. The best job you can have in your life may be working for mom and dad, but the toughest job you’re probably going to have in your life is working for mom or dad.
  2. In order for a family business to succeed, you must plan with the family, not for the family. 
  3. If the family can unite and build a shared vision that everybody contributes to, the business benefits, the ownership team benefits. So by default, the employees, the community. The trickle-down effect is tremendous when that family is rowing in the same direction.

Meet Vincent Valeri

Our guest, Vincent Valeri is a Family enterprise advisor, wealth coach and speaker.    Vincent brings a unique perspective on the entrepreneurial journey as he works exclusively with family-owned businesses. 

Smart Man, Smarter Woman References

We talk about a lot in each episode; however, we don’t want you to miss a thing! Here are some key items were mentioned if you want to take a closer look.

Book Recommendation
Crucial Conversations by Kerry Patterson, Joseph Granny, Ron McMillan, Al Switzler
The Speed of Trust by Stephen M. R. Covey


Twitter – @valeri79

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Steve Loates (00:06):
Welcome to the Smart Man, Smarter Woman, a podcast to help entrepreneurs grow and succeed in their own entrepreneurial journey. I am Steve Loates …

Juliet Aurora (00:19):
And I’m Juliet Aurora …

Steve Loates (00:21):
And we are your co-hosts. We have a great show for you today with our very special guest, Vincent Valeri, a family enterprise advisor, instructor, and speaker. But before I officially introduced Vincent to you, let’s hear from my wonderful cohost, the smarter woman herself, Juliet.

Juliet Aurora (00:43):
Welcome everyone to our podcast. I think we’re going to have a great episode for you today. We’ve known Vincent for a couple of years. I think it’s three years we’ve known Vincent. Lots of information that he has in his head that we’re going to try and extract for you over the next half hour.

Steve Loates (01:02):
Awesome. Thank you Juliet. And as I mentioned at the beginning of our podcast, it is for and about entrepreneurs. And our goal with each one of our episodes is try to provide some entertainment but most importantly some value for you, the listener, some insights, hopefully some gold nuggets that can help you on your own entrepreneurial journey no matter where you are, whether you’re just starting out or you’re many years into it. So without further ado, I’ll give you a little bit of background on Vincent.

Steve Loates (01:38):
He currently lives in the Hamilton region in Ontario with his wife and young family. He graduated from Western Sydney University with a BA in management and obtained his master in business management from the University of Technology in Sydney. He is currently a family business and wealth coach as well as a family enterprise advisor. He also does a lot of speaking and leads workshops and he’s also an instructor. So really, really busy guy. So welcome, Vincent, and thank you very much for joining us.

Vincent Valeri (02:13):
Thank you Juliet and Steve. I’m smiling at the smarter woman, because I have known you guys for a few years and I concur with the title of your podcast.

Juliet Aurora (02:22):
I appreciate that. Thank you.

Vincent Valeri (02:24):
Thank you for putting this on.

Steve Loates (02:27):
So how are you doing in these crazy times?

Vincent Valeri (02:30):
Adjusting. I think that’s all you can do. Okay. I mean, happy to be home with my wife and my young son. Everybody’s healthy, my extended family’s healthy. So we’re lucky in that sense. But like you guys being an entrepreneur and like being active, it’s been interesting to see our own little family unit evolution from a little bit of chaos to more of a sense of calm now. But that, for me, worries me a bit when there’s a little bit of too much calmness because I think like everybody, we’d like to get back at it in the best way possible, which we’re all trying to figure out. And it’s interesting. It’s an interesting time that we all find ourselves in literally the exact same moment.

Steve Loates (03:16):
Yeah, absolutely.

Juliet Aurora (03:17):

Vincent Valeri (03:18):
And it’s never …

Steve Loates (03:21):
Maybe why don’t we start out and can you share a little bit about your own entrepreneurial journey? How did you get … I know you’ve been running your own business for a few years now, but how did you get into it and what made you want to become an entrepreneur?

Vincent Valeri (03:39):
So thank you. So I mean, like all of our stories, it really starts with my parents, namely my dad. So my dad was an immigrant to Canada. He started a technology company in the ’70s that grew into a good sized business throughout Canada and the US. So that was really my first role model was an entrepreneur. I worked for my dad for a very long time. It was always my ambition and probably a little bit of laziness too that I was just going to end up working for dad and then dad as, as entrepreneurs do, made a tough decision in 2006 to sell his business. And that really kind of scared me, but it also gave me an opportunity to find myself and create my own identity. And that was I was going to follow my dad in business. Never wanted to do anything but work in business or work for myself.

Vincent Valeri (04:28):
That role has changed. It’s evolved a lot over the years. So after I worked for my dad for 15 years, unbelievably, while I was doing my masters and various different things that the family was doing at the time, ended up in a marketing role for a big company in Mississauga. Loved that work. I never was exposed to that in my father’s manufacturing company. Then from there I ended up in wealth management. I don’t know how, but it just seemed like the right fit at the time and started working with family businesses, business owners like yourselves, entrepreneurs, primarily managing their wealth, their financial assets, but it was in that role that I started to meet a lot of families like mine that went through, a lot of it being in the Hamilton area, immigrants, family came over from Europe, started a company, company grew, and then family members started to work in that enterprise. And as a family they created this thing called wealth.

Vincent Valeri (05:24):
So it was in that role that I saw the opportunity, the importance and challenges that family businesses bring and come with, the unique circumstances, opportunities for wealth creation, but then also the challenges and just the communication amongst the family members and the difficulties in transition. So that was my impetus. In 2013 I was introduced to this program that I just finished finally after six years called the Family Enterprise Advisor Designation, which is put on by a big organization in Canada called the Family Enterprise Exchange. And it was really there where I understood and realized the importance of small family owned businesses to Canada just from a GDP perspective. And that was the light bulb switch.

Vincent Valeri (06:10):
So in 2014 I made the decision to leave the bank and start a business on my own, which was primarily focused on small family owned business owners and helping them in a variety of ways. Initially it was very much management, operational focused because that was my background. But from there, again, I gravitated towards the relational side of the work. And I went head first into understanding family systems, family systems theory around enterprises and businesses. And that was continuing to be an evolution. And that was really how it started, Steve. I saw an opportunity while working for one of our big banks in Canada on the disconnect between the money management and the people side of the business. Saw the gap, as entrepreneurs do, and tried to provide that very niche offering to the businesses in our community.

Juliet Aurora (07:01):
Well, and it’s interesting. So you also come at it from an experience point of view, not just a theoretical, that you actually were in business with your dad and would understand the dynamics of what happens around the boardroom table affects what happens around the dinner table or the holiday table. And for those of you that don’t know, Steve and I are married, so we are actually in business together as well. And it does, it comes with a whole different set of dynamics being married and trying to maintain that relationship separate and independently of our business relationship. So you certainly have focused … I mean, there’s a lot of wealth managers out there. There’s a lot of business coaches out there. But you really have drilled into a very specific need that needs to be filled. So I think that’s interesting to hear your journey as well.

Vincent Valeri (07:56):
Yeah. Thank you Juliet. And like you said, there’s multiple relationships at play and if we don’t … I mean, the first step is really acknowledging that and then having that mindset shift to really wanting to work in this manner together and what does that mean? And really, it’s like I say, when I work with family businesses, especially with the next gen, the best job you can have in your life may be working for mom and dad, but the toughest job you’re probably going to have in your life is working for mom or dad. And just acknowledge it and call it out for what it is and then work within that system, because to avoid it as foolhardy, like you just articulated with being married to our dear friend Steve.

Juliet Aurora (08:39):
Well, and I think also that with the demographic that’s out there for business owners, that there probably is a lot of businesses now that are passing from one generation to the next and what that shift in power and balance of power is going to look like as well.

Vincent Valeri (08:56):
It’s massive. Canada has a unique ecosystem because a lot of the wealth creators in this country are still very much first generation. All the wealth in this country was generated in the ’30s, the ’40s, and ’50s. And you’re right. It’s happening en mass. I’ll give you guys some statistics. BMO released a study in November of 2018 that said in Canada, in our small little economy that we’re … Big for us, but small globally. From from 2016 to 2026 a trillion dollars was transitioning to the next generation over the next 10 years. So we’re already four years into that study.

Juliet Aurora (09:35):

Vincent Valeri (09:36):
And the interesting about that piece is that 70% of it are financial assets. And there’s a lot of research on this that shows that the reason for wealth and/or business transition failure or challenges, because I think failure is a bit strong. It’s like success. We have to determine what that means first before we can say it was a success or it was a failure. But the reasons that it gets tricky is because of a trust and communication breakdown amongst the family unit. And the second biggest reason is unprepared heirs, people not being prepared, as you said earlier, Juliet, that power shift, especially coming up. So son or daughter or next gen, what we call rising gen, is taking over responsibility from mom and dad, from their previous generation or an uncle, whatever that structure is.

Vincent Valeri (10:28):
So on one hand it’s worrisome because from a … I said on the onset, the biggest driver of our economy in this country are businesses like yours, like mine, like the families that we collectively serve. It’s that small family owned business in Canada generates upwards of 50% of our country’s GDP that’s going through this monumental shift and literally personnel. It’s one thing that the financial assets are moving or the business responsibility is moving, but a new set of leaders is literally emerging in our country. So it’s an interesting time to have these conversations with families and the businesses that they own.

Steve Loates (11:08):
That’s great. I mean, I think all entrepreneurs, all businesses at some stage of their evolution deal with challenges. Family businesses I’m sure have some unique challenges that perhaps don’t exist in all businesses. What advice would you give to a family small business? Maybe a couple of tips you would give them to try and avoid some of the most common pitfalls or most common mistakes that family businesses make.

Vincent Valeri (11:52):
We hear this advice a lot, but it’s really about being proactive. That’s step one, is really adopting that mindset. This is a proactive process. There’s no start and finish when it comes to family planning or wealth management. It’s a continuous thing. So really the first thing is adopting that mindset. The second thing I would encourage families to do is have the courage to move towards a comfortable level of transparency. So what does that mean? Right? So typically mom and dad, the leading generation are owning this business. They may or may not have a desire for their kids to be in it. We don’t know until there’s that conversation. But be forthright about it.

Vincent Valeri (12:35):
Plan with the family, not for the family. So really adopt the mindset that this is a process. And the second one right off the hop would be get comfortable or get courageous with moving towards a more comfortable level of transparency with your family so that real conversations and planning can take place. What we often find is that we missed the … Depending on the cycle of the business and the family, the next generation might only see a successful business as an example. So they don’t know or have an experience witnessed the actual hardships, the struggles that it took for the family to build this business.

Vincent Valeri (13:13):
So part of it is, again, opening the mindset up to a longer term process, moving towards transparency, sharing those stories and adopting what we call a whole family or a family enterprise mindset.

Juliet Aurora (13:28):
I love that quote, and I’m just going to repeat it so that just in case anybody missed it, which was plan with the family, not for the family. I love that because so often as business owners, entrepreneurs, as parents, it’s, “Okay, well you’re coming into the business. Okay, here’s what you need to do.” And we kind of map everything out for them as opposed to actually listening to who the next generation is going to be. So I absolutely love that quote.

Vincent Valeri (13:55):
Each of us has our own vision for ourselves, for our lives. And then if we happen to be so fortunate to be business owners, we have a vision for that. The reality is our visions may have overlap and similarities, but they will never, ever, ever be exactly the same. It’s impossible. We’re people. We’re individuals. So the idea that our vision, my vision is going to be the model or the blueprint that my kids have to buy into, it’s foolhardy. The research shows. We’ve worked with these families in our own ecosystem here in Hamilton and Burlington that we know of this conflict. There’s a ton of stories of families breaking down when it comes to money.

Vincent Valeri (14:38):
So how do we combat this? The only way I know how and unless there’s a magic potion is to communicate. And it’s about having the courage as a family to have these difficult conversations so that we can plan together. One of the other quotes, if I may, Juliet, that I’ll share with you, it’s not from me. It’s taken from James Hughes and one of his books called Family Wealth, Keeping it in the Family. One of his quotes, and I’m going to paraphrase, is one of the goals of a family can be or should be the highest pursuit of happiness for each individual, allowing them to self actualate and if that’s self actualization comes back that there is a role for you at the business and it meets who you are, it serves you as a person, son, daughter, brother, sister, and it’s a good fit for the business, amazing.

Vincent Valeri (15:32):
The research shows that when those two things come together, there’s nothing more powerful than a family business. But we have to have those conversations and mindset and courage early on so that we can arrive at that point that we can have a real adult conversation about what’s best for the family and what’s best for the business.

Juliet Aurora (15:52):
Have you found in your experience that there are families that have gone through that process, they’ve had those conversations and even though at the start when they started working with you, they thought that, yes, the kids were taking over the business and at the end realized that hey, no, they can’t and the business has to be sold or wound down?

Vincent Valeri (16:16):
Absolutely. So a variety of options come out of it. One example of working with a family, small family business up in Vaughan where middle aged guy, not an old guy, like I’m a middle aged guy, been in the business for a long time, 30 years. Has an up and coming what we call a rising gen in their late 20s and the two of them had very different … So there you’re dealing with a couple of factors. You’re dealing with a business life cycle that as you guys know, business itself is difficult. Now you overlay family, it becomes challenging. So that case study there, if you just take a step back and say, “Okay, in this case it was dad 64, 65 years old, young 30-something year old daughter, in this case. They’re at different life cycles. Dad looking at saying, “My mortality is coming up soon. What does retirement look like for me in this situation?” The young life then is saying, “How do I get more involved? How do I get more responsibility? How can I possibly get ownership of this business?”

Vincent Valeri (17:17):
The two of them have two very different visions. When I started to work with them and allow dad through just questioning and some coaching, what it is that he wants for himself, for the business and for the family, and then doing the same exercise with his daughter and then bringing them together to share that conversation. They realized that just from a pure timeline perspective, this isn’t going to work. It’s just not going to work. It’s unrealistic that the business and my life cycle, they just don’t match at that time. So now they’re going through that process of maybe I’m not going to transition this to my daughter because for my own retirement needs, I might have to sell. Which we encourage business owners to think selling is not a failure. Selling is winning.

Vincent Valeri (18:06):
And that’s part of adopting that family enterprise mindset. It doesn’t have to be just widget company A. Family enterprise encompasses all of the moving parts of a family, all of the wealth creators, whether it’s even philanthropy. It doesn’t matter. But it’s moving away from all of us identifying with the widget company and finding our own identity and how does that play a role inside the business? And that’s just one example, Juliet. I’m sure you guys have some too as well.

Juliet Aurora (18:38):
Excellent. Thank you.

Steve Loates (18:39):
Yeah. That’s great. I mean, we can hear the passion in your voice. You’re obviously very passionate about what you do.

Vincent Valeri (18:49):
I am.

Steve Loates (18:50):
What would you say, what do you love the most about what you’re doing?

Vincent Valeri (18:57):
I love seeing people step into their own power and make decisions. I love it. It’s refreshing to see, especially working with a family unit. I get a lot of joy of working one on one coaching. I love it. But where what’s really amazing to see is a family come together, a family meeting, a family retreat, whatever name you put on it, and watching them come to certain realizations, communicate and start planning together. It’s incredible. Because the knock on effect is tremendous. If the family can unite and build a shared vision that everybody contributes to, the business benefits, the ownership team benefits. So by default, the employees, the community. The trickle down effect is tremendous when that family is rowing in the same direction.

Vincent Valeri (19:46):
But it doesn’t mean that everybody has to be in that same boat, as an example. We agree on certain things. One of the easiest and most challenging things that we do with families is helping them build a family employment policy. So the entrepreneur starts out with a passion and in some ways a necessity to build a business. Like me, I’m unemployable. So I need to go start a business so that my passions and my awkwardness can take place in a business setting. So even with families that they start to go, “Oh, I would love to pass this onto my kids,” even though the kid is 10 years old. I hear that with family. So my succession plan, junior or whoever is going to take over. And it’s like, “Well let’s talk about that.” Because emotionally speaking from a pure … I’m not a psychologist, but from a personal perspective, building process, preparedness process, it takes time for people to step into their own responsibilities and everybody’s different. So it’s understanding that and nurturing that. And we’re off on many tangents now.

Juliet Aurora (20:52):
No, no. That’s fine. Well, and it’s interesting. So you said that sometimes you start a business because you can’t work for someone else. And I’m pretty much certain that Steve says that all the time when he’s asked the question as to why he started his business, and it was the … What’s you’re saying, that you don’t play well with others and needed to be the boss?

Steve Loates (21:13):
Yeah. I mean, I’ve learned very, very early in my early 20s. I had four jobs in a year and a half and very different jobs doing different things, working with different people. I mean, the first couple of times I was fired. And so I thought, “Oh, okay. Well, that’s their problem.” But by the time you get to the third or fourth one, you start to realize you’re the one that’s connected to all these things, right? You’re the common denominator. So maybe the challenge is not with these other people, that may be the challenge is with you. And so when I came to that realization, like I say, I realized that if I was going to have a lengthy career doing anything, it was most likely going to be working for me. And then it was just a matter of trying to figure out what that looked like and what it was going to be. But it’s a tough education sometimes.

Steve Loates (22:17):
If you had a friend or a family member who was thinking of becoming an entrepreneur, what advice would you give them?

Vincent Valeri (22:30):
Maybe ask me after the COVID crisis. What advice would I give them? I mean, to take the time to think it through and to really build that. I mean, whether this sounds cliche or not, but there’s a lot of power and value in writing stuff down, right? So really build this out first. Talk to people, ask questions, build … The buildup for me, especially now what we’re learning with what’s going on, to be a business owner comes with so many moving parts. That’s the fascinating piece of it. But before going into any entrepreneurial endeavour, do your homework, reach out to people, ask for help too. I think we have a fallacy that I’ve got to be self-made. There’s that whole saying, “I’m a self-made millionaire.” That’s not true. Somebody along the way helped you, whether it was your first client or they opened the door. There was someone along the way.

Vincent Valeri (23:30):
Especially in the in the day and age that we’re at with the network capabilities. Ask for help, ask for help. Seek people that have done it before you and put your unique spin on it. And I find too, even with my work, I’m very grateful that there’s other people that have been doing this before me, what I would call the experts in my field and they’re very gracious to pass on knowledge. I would say that would be true for almost any entrepreneurial endeavour because I think why we get along and we respect each other so much is because we’re entrepreneurs and we know what it’s like. And as you guys know, my wife is also an entrepreneur. So you share that … It’s a mentality thing where there’s a get up and do it type attitude that we just go and do it.

Steve Loates (24:18):
Absolutely. It’s a unique mindset. That was a great comment you made there too. It reminds me of a quote, I think it was Peter Drucker or maybe it was Warren buffet. Anyway, this quote I heard where they said that if you’re sitting down relaxing under a huge oak tree, you have to remember that 25 years ago someone planted a seed, right? Or there’s no tree for you to sit under. And that’s something that so often, and I’m sure you deal with it all the time in family businesses, is you’re right, that they see the success but they don’t see the blood, sweat, and tears that went on for many years to get to where they are today. And that’s a tough challenge.

Vincent Valeri (25:06):
It’s extremely tough. And that’s one of the exercises that we will do with family is actually helping them articulate their family story. If there happens to be an op goal still in the business or just to share some of that. The technical term is oscillating narrative, right? So talk about the ups and downs. Share the story. I mean, one of the blessings, and I try to view the world as a yin and yang with blessings and burnings. One of the blessings of this pandemic that we’re all facing at the exact same time and learning to deal with it is we’re forced to be together. Right? So now it’s the stories that have been coming up, I’ve reconnected with people I haven’t spoke to in years. It’s like getting back to basics. We need to talk to each other. The power of just communicating.

Vincent Valeri (25:54):
But I think understanding and realizing that needs to start with the family unit first, that’s our original tribe, right? The family is the unit and I get it. I come from a challenging family background myself. I think we all have these stories, but I think going forward, the COVID has taught us that family is vitally important. There’s only a select number … And however you define family too. That’s the other thing that we help families do as part of our work is how do we define family? Just because we’re blood doesn’t mean that I consider you … There’s different levels of that relationship.

Juliet Aurora (26:33):
It was interesting when you started out talking, you were talking about … When Steve asked you what advice would you give to an entrepreneur who was starting out and you said, “Well, maybe ask me after the COVID crisis.” And so it is interesting as we go through this, which is an unprecedented time for all of us, to see how differently entrepreneurs are going through this versus if you were an employee of an organization and how you’re going through it. The challenges you’re dealing with are different. But even the way that you’re reacting to things is completely different. So I do think it’s interesting that it may end up being that because of this crisis that there’s a whole new series of entrepreneurs that hit the ground running on the outside of this.

Vincent Valeri (27:22):
I hope so. I mean, what this has done for me is really, I mean thankfully, a lot of time to pause and reflect. And what I’ve done, I’ve gone back to my dad. He’s 77 now and really like, “Tell me again about that story. What was it like? How hard was it?” And then it puts things in perspective. All the world today is so much easier, challenging in other things, but easier in a lot of ways than what the young immigrants of this country had. Just so much has changed to help us through our work that it’s … It wasn’t a long time ago that the ’70s and ’80 were before us where the markets were crazy. There’s been pandemics before. So it’s just interesting to look back and reflect on recent history and appreciate and learn from what people went through and how they adapted. It’s that quote, adapt, migrate, or parish.

Juliet Aurora (28:17):

Vincent Valeri (28:17):
We all can make a choice. We can do nothing and perish. We can leave the situation or we can adapt. And I think that’s what entrepreneurialism is. It’s adapting, it’s learning to adapt. I’m hopeful that more and more families, family businesses recognize that communicating and talking through the tough times, documenting it. As an example, one family I worked with up north had a major fire in their building five or six years ago and it decimated their business. It was incredible. Within 12 months they were up and running. The family bound together. And they actually use that devastating time. That’s part of their mission statement. So it’s almost like looking at … Because life’s going to happen. When I work with families, we talk about planning in between the life events.

Vincent Valeri (29:10):
Now, the wealth management industry, they talk about life event is usually somebody passing or they’re incapacitated. So now as a family we scramble because the business owner is no longer able to make the decisions they were able to make yesterday. It’s like if COVID can teach us anything, it’s that life is going to happen. It’s going to happen. It’s going to come at us in a variety of different ways. So to not plan continuously and be proactive and communicate, that’s the best strategy I can offer because the other stuff, even by just talking about it and then a life event happens, we’ve already prepared ourselves in some ways, at least emotionally and mentally. We’ve processed these conversations already. Now it’s about how can we act on it?

Steve Loates (29:58):
Yeah. That’s great. I actually watched a short video this morning put on by a a fairly well known business coach and he said that the most important thing, I don’t think he used the word the best entrepreneurs, but he said the most important thing for entrepreneurs to be doing today and really in any sort of crisis, but particularly now when for so many entrepreneurs, their business has actually been shut down. It’s beyond their control. He said now is the time that they should be spending time learning, evaluating their businesses, evaluating their processes. What can we do better? What could we change? What are we doing that we need to stop doing? And he said, because this like all other things will pass and you need to come out of it on the other side in the strongest position possible. And that is by learning.

Steve Loates (31:06):
He said learn new skills. I mean, you certainly have time right now, right? If there’s ever something you’ve wanted to learn more about, learn more about it. There’s no excuses with YouTube and podcasts and everything else, you can go and learn new skills. And I thought that was a very valuable lesson, particularly for entrepreneurs. Never stop learning. And that is a little bit of a segue into my next question. Most entrepreneurs are continuous learners. What is the best way that you find to help you keep learning? Do you like to read? Do you watch videos, podcasts, going to conferences? What works the best for you?

Vincent Valeri (31:58):
So a variety. I love to read, so I love the old traditional books still. So I love to read. Probably the last year or so I’ve gotten more into the YouTube stuff, speakers and part of that is just trying to hone my craft as a speaker as well too, but definitely. I just finished this Family Enterprise Advisor designation that the Family Enterprise Exchange puts on. That was a 12 month in person program, so two classes a month for 10 months. And I loved that peer learning. There was 42 of us in this room from a variety of professions, a lot of brain power in that room. And it was amazing to be able to spend a year with 42 professionals and talk through what it means to be a family enterprise, different ways to help them.

Vincent Valeri (32:46):
So by far the most enjoyable I love is that in person live training or education programs, recognizing that part of my instructor role is offering an online program. I see the value in online learning as well too. I think there’s definitely a place for it. But for me, I think, just the question up, Steve, definitely reading. One of the things I do often, maybe too much, is I’m infectious about reading about history. So the history of the markets, the history of geopolitics, because countries have been here before, families have been here before. And it’s interesting to look back and understand the different policies governments provided, how people came out of the Depression with respect to being entrepreneurs. So I’m in that phase right now. I’m trying to learn as much contextually as what did other people do when they were put up against the wall like this. All of us have a network. People will be more than happy to share their story. And I find that versus, “Hey Juliet, what do you do?” Versus, “Why do you do what you do?”

Juliet Aurora (33:57):

Vincent Valeri (33:59):
And then it’s just like … And I know a bit of your story and that’s the infectious part, right?

Steve Loates (34:06):
That’s a great answer. Great answer. It’s funny too how many entrepreneurs we talk to and you ask them how do you like learning? And a lot of them it’s reading. But it is very common, it seems, that they love to read about history, as you just said, and biographies, right? Which, again, is history, right? It’s what have people done in the past that I can learn from to help me going forward? So that’s great. That brings us to a part in the podcast where I like to ask a series of questions and I ask this series of questions, I ask the same questions for all of our guests. Bear with me while we do this. What one word best defines an entrepreneur.

Vincent Valeri (35:05):

Steve Loates (35:08):
What profession other than your own would you like to attempt?

Vincent Valeri (35:15):
I’m thinking more about getting back into manufacturing.

Steve Loates (35:19):
What profession would you not like to do?

Vincent Valeri (35:25):
Probably wouldn’t go back to managing money. I wouldn’t go back to managing money as a wealth advisor.

Steve Loates (35:31):
What sound or noise do you love?

Vincent Valeri (35:38):
What sound or noise do I love? Does Pearl Jam count as a sound or a noise?

Steve Loates (35:44):
Absolutely, absolutely.

Juliet Aurora (35:45):
That is one of the strangest questions that you ask everybody, Steve.

Steve Loates (35:49):
But we get some great answers.

Vincent Valeri (35:54):
Pearl Jam is my favourite sound.

Steve Loates (35:57):
Okay, okay. And what book would you recommend that entrepreneurs should read?

Vincent Valeri (36:05):
Can I give two? Am I allowed to give two?

Steve Loates (36:08):
Okay. Just because it’s you.

Vincent Valeri (36:09):
So Crucial Conversations. The author alludes me at the moment or you can Google it, Crucial Conversations. And the second one, again, I find for the most important for business is The Speed of Trust by Covey. I think communication, in my opinion, that’s the vital skill. If you’re able to communicate, articulate what you want, ask for what you want, the other business stuff you could find someone to help you with.

Steve Loates (36:39):
Okay. Terrific. When your own entrepreneurial journey is completed, what do you hope your legacy is?

Vincent Valeri (36:51):
I hope that my legacy is I would be known for someone that was able to help others in their transition in family businesses.

Steve Loates (37:00):
Thank you. That’s terrific. Where can our listeners connect with you, Vincent? If they want to get in touch with you and I’ll spell the name, Vincent, I think everybody’s got, but Valeri is V-A-L-E-R-I. What’s the best way for someone to reach out and connect with you?

Vincent Valeri (37:17):
So they can connect with me via LinkedIn. That’s probably the easiest way. One of my partner companies is Legacy Capital, it’s www.legacycapitals with an S, dot com. LinkedIn is probably the easiest or you want to send me an email at vav@vincentvaleri.com.

Steve Loates (37:36):
Perfect. And do you have anything you want to add, Juliet, before we get to my quote?

Juliet Aurora (37:43):
No. I thought that was a great conversation. I think that we’re going to have to bring Vincent back to maybe talk about succession planning. I think that that is … As we’ve said, there’s this whole generation maybe like in our situation, none of our kids have any interest in taking over the business, so we need to figure out what to do with it. But I think maybe bringing Vincent back and having a conversation about succession planning.

Steve Loates (38:08):
Yeah. That’s great idea because we’ve barely even touched on that in this conversation, so that’s great. Okay. So our quote for this episode, life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you respond to it. And I think that in today’s times, that’s a good lesson for all of us. So in closing, I’d just again like to thank Vincent very much. Really enjoyed it. Great job, super guest. Lots of very helpful information. Thank you to my awesome co-host Juliet, and thank you to you, most importantly, our listener for tuning in and we hope you found some value. If you did, please subscribe to the podcast, leave us a review, share it with a friend. That would be awesome. And thank you very much. Until next time, take good care of yourself and those you love. Bye for now.

Song by Adam Vitovsky / CC BY 3.0

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Episode 8