Hire Slow, Fire Fast

The Inventive Journey
Episode #341
Hire Slow, Fire Fast
w/ Yuko Tsuchida

What This Episode Talks About:

How To Manage Business & Self

"We tell people who your going to hire is most important. As a small business owner that is what I always think about. Our firms slogan is to hire slow and fire fast. We do our best to hire people based on culture and our values, but it doesn't always turn out to be a good hire. We try to be transparent and set goals and milestones for them so we can quickly assess if there a good fit for our company."


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What Is The Inventive Journey?

Starting and growing a business is a journey. On The Inventive Journey, your host, Devin Miller walks with startups along their different journeys startups take to success (or failure). You also get to hear from featured guests, such as venture firms and angel investors, that provide insight on the paths to a successful inventive journey.

ai generated transcription

people people who you're gonna hire is like you know most important uh as a small business owner that's what i always think about and our culture well our confirm like we always talk about higher slow fire fire fast so even like you know we do our best to hire people based on culture and our values it doesn't always turn out um turn as a good hire so we need to uh be transparent and like you know we try to like set the goals and milestones for them so that we can quickly assess are they really good fit for our company [Music] hey everyone this is devin miller here with another episode of the inventive journey i'm your host devin miller the serial entrepreneur that's grown several startups in the seven and eight figure businesses as well as a founder and ceo of miller ip law we help startups and small businesses with their patents and trademarks if you ever need help with yours just go to strategymeeting.com grab some time with us at chat and we're always here to help now today we have another great guest on the podcast yuko tashida and uh yuko was born and raised in japan and uh went to an all-girls school in japan then came to oklahoma for undergraduate worked in compliance did some compliance work for some big financial firms um the work didn't feel like she was really helping businesses and wasn't quite what she looking for um so then started a cpa firm for about 10 years with a partner partnership ended up breaking up went to spain i think to then get an mba went and worked in africa and japan for a bit and then in 2017 uh started a new firm focused on tax credits and tax incentives so with that much is an introduction welcome on to the podcast yuko thank you so much david for having me absolutely my pleasure so well with that um i gave kind of the condensed version of the 30 second second version to a much longer journey so why don't we uh back up a bit in time and tell us how your journey got uh started uh in japan and go from there yeah uh growing up like you know back in japan uh my parents had like you know small business uh as well so i always wanted to like you know help small business uh owners and besides that i love math and like i used to like you know compete in afghan competition so between those two i decided like you know i want to become a like you know cpa and help like you know small owner like business owners been about i was like 14. so fast forward uh another thing was i was in love with uh luke perry at the time so i decided to come to america and pursue my accounting carrier so now you said okay you went to school and you know in or schooling as uh in the in japan got that education now what out of all the places what made you decide to come to oklahoma for undergraduate yeah so i never came to america before the day i landed here so my parents said like you know okay we will hire like you know uh counselor if we can help us like select like you know uh college in the united states so i gave them like you know spillover like what i'm looking for i said i want a true american experience like where there's not much like foreign students so this person said like you know i have an amazing place for you which was oklahoma and i wanted to be close to like you know california like new york but my american map was in my small like english dictionary so even like you know small map like it looks it looked like you know closer to like california so i said i was sold and like you know after a year later i got on a plane and landed in oklahoma which was culture shock but it was a great four years they say okay hey this will be the true you know experience and uh you get into oklahoma and uh you you studied got your your 40 your four-year degree and i think as we chatted a bit before so you're coming out coming out of undergraduate you've got the degree and then you went to work with one of the big financial firms in compliance work is that right that's correct so i got accounting degree from northeastern state university in oklahoma and then i got my first job with kpmg and helped like you know file or prepare tax return for multinational companies like honda and stuff so they say okay i'm going to go into doing or doing that compliance work now you know and i think you you mentioned uh when we chatted a bit before so you did the compliance work and i think it was for about 10 years or no was it a few years or so like 10 years with the year the cpa firm but how long did you do compliance work for about three years and then like you know during that time of course like i wrote it like they call it rotation so like you know i'll go to different department like financial audit uh and transfer pricing so i have like you know opportunity to kind of like uh get to know about different tax area and like you know cpa work other than like you know preparing tax returns as well they say okay i can do that for a couple years and you get some great experience now one of the things that uh i if i remember when we talked a bit before was you know why you were doing that work and you know getting working for a big business on the other hand it wasn't necessarily the ideal setup from the sense that um you weren't helping the businesses you wanted you weren't kind of doing the work you want so what or what kind of triggered that or what was the realization hey this may not be the the you know the career field or the the job for me what kind of prompted that um you know a desire for a switch yeah so uh during that like you know me trying out different department i stumble across my tax credit tax incentive in a state and local department and one of the things like i love working for big4 accounting firm and like you know i learned so much from them um whenever like you know i was working on big four accounting firm and like you know preparing like tax credits study for like larger firms like food gaffer before accounting for thieves right i was like you know uh i was just looking around and talking to a lot of people and like you know people who really needed those tax credit tax incentives or small to mid-sized business owners but they couldn't afford to uh hire a big four accounting firm so that prompted me to like you know i love doing these work for a larger organization but i would like to uh serve like more under served community which is like you know small too like mid-sized farm and that's really why i left big4 firm and then started the company was my previous uh former business partner they say okay gonna go out strike it on my own and then do the your own firm and now i think you you know so and make sense as to why you might to look to say i'm going to make that change or make that an adjustment in the career and so you go out and you make that adjustment and then you know how did you decide to bring on you know or bring on the partner or how did you know is it some way that you'd already knew or someone that already had a firm or how did you kind of get that business up and going so i think you guys did a partnership for about 10 years or so before you guys decided to part ways but how did that get all started with the both of you yeah sure so i met jeff who was my previous business partner at the in kpmg one of the party i went to and um one of the reasons i got connected here was like you know i was doing like a rotation at his department so he was a already partner at st local tax department uh so same time similar time like you know i was thinking about leaving the big four he was thinking about uh starting his firm so we started talking what if like you know we start like you know i help him build up like you know his business and like you know we become partners so that's how all the all things i started and i was partner with him and like you know uh later on we acquired like merged with company so uh we were in a business together for about eight years so you say okay and you know without getting into the details and i always get the you know a bit of breakups within partnerships or just that it's always a bit of a breakup but what made you guys to decide to go different ways or what made you decide to end that business because you know ten years or eight years or so is a good amount of time to work together but was it simply just difference of opinion difference in direction couldn't get along anymore had a different opportunity or what made you decide to you know dissolve or go different ways and then go to get the nba in spain sure um i think like you know i consider him like a long time like really close friend of mine uh one thing like as we grew the firm i think culture and like you know where we want to go as a company we couldn't see i2i so as a minority owner i decided to leave the firm and then really think about what type of culture i want to like create if i ever have like you know another firm and then just take a time off and uh think about what is really important for me personally and professionally because like you know since i'm 22 right after college like i was working probably like 15 hours a day um non-stop and um just be tall i was probably burned out as well so it was great to like you know take a time off uh sit back and like went back to mba and then another thing i always wanted to do uh was um like uh grant here or like work for non-profit organization in underserved communities so that took me to south africa and working with a non-profit organization or finance so we say okay you know that and that sounds like you know it's uh definitely was a good change and i definitely get you know you work a lot of time a lot of hours you get burned out you're wanting to take a break you want to go different direction and so you know you step back and so you go do the nba in spain then you go and work in a bid in africa do some the things in the orphanage go back to japan now as you're kind of now saying okay i've taken that break i've taken a step back and you know had that experience what you know and you're i think you worked you know in africa and japan for a bit and then 2017 comes around what made you decide to kind of go back into doing your own firm was it hey i ran out of money and i have to make a living or hey i want to go and i want to you know i've taken my break and i want to re-engage and kind of get things going again or kind of what was the genesis for starting your own firm again yeah so uh the reason like i started my firm again number one i loved what i uh do so i wanted to like you know get back into tax credit tax incentive and like really help like small to mid science businesses number two was um i think um i wanted i was a craving for like you know can i do this can i build my friend like by myself and have a really good culture and people around my company so those are the two things like you know i jump back into building this farm and like it's been amazing like i've been telling like people like this year we had bad hires we have no turnovers but uh i have to say now we have eight people in my farm and it's amazing people are online we love our culture and people you know breathe about like you know talk about our culture how great it is at the same time like you know being professional working hard no and i think that you know sounds like yeah you know after having the experience of working with other big businesses and doing it with a partner then you kind of uh settled into hey here the area that is going to be the one that i love and enjoy is going to be worthwhile and kind of where i can add the most value and also have the most enjoyment so now as you've you know started your own firm kind of got like going to 2017 so you know you know four or five years in how has it gone has it you know been one where it has been that level of enjoyment has been worthwhile and you've loved it has it been difficult or rocky go or you know ups and downs or kind of how's it been over the last four or five years yeah that first two three years was up and down uh there was numerous time like is it worth for me to build this firm uh having said that last year i i think it really turned around our company when i hire like number one like you know business development person and she being she has been like you know my number two and really uh striving or shaping our culture and whenever we go through like hiring either like employee or like you know taking on clients we always talk about our mission our culture and like you know what type of people i want to work with we want to work with and that really shifted our company and uh the people we are working with as well and it's getting easier and easier and like in a convenient like you know we go into like you know not just selling like you know tax credit before we do that we talk about what is your liking a goal what are you looking for what type of partnership like you know would you like to have with us and so that really like you know making uh make it easy to like grow the firm with the right people and right clients and i have to say it's been such an amazing like great experience for like last year oh that's that's exciting you know it's interesting that you know you watch the the watch the movies or read the books and it's always hey i was an overnight success and everything and every time you hear you talk with an actual business owner or you do that first of all there's always a journey that comes along with it but even when you're starting your own firm starting your own business those first few years are almost always hey it was get figuring out who we're going to help how we're going to help them how it resource clients what we're going to do and is this worth it and so i think that that you know experience definitely resonates i think with a lot of experiences that people have and what how it really works out in in reality is that you know there is that difference in that first few years is not always just the easy going the the everybody always you know thinks it is but there's a lot of work that goes into that so that's definitely interesting to hear you know now as you said okay we're in it you know four or five years now we've got it we've got past those initial two or three years we've got things a bit more figured out or settled and we're continuing to grow and expand and kind of continue to offer the areas or service areas of service that you enjoy where do you kind of see the next six to 12 months going for you guys yeah next six to 12 months like you know we are continuing to grow our company one is like you know we our core business is r d tax credit and employee retention tax credits but i come from the background like negotiating tax credit as well with the state so in california california competes tax credits and like you know there's like different like tax credits out there so for us to like offer and grow with our clients we need to bring in much more like a little bit different like skill set of people who get negotiate tax credit really identify and like you know be up in front of like you know clients like investments so that our clients can maximize their tax credit tax incentives so that they can grow no i think that that's uh definitely will be you know as people are always looking to and it doesn't matter which business you're in you're always looking to say hey how can we reduce our tax liability how can we save the business money how can we grow and i think that some of those tax credits and and reducing that tax liability and also um reducing that burden on the business definitely is an area that will never go away and it's always something that's needed and sounds like a great area to grow into well as we start to wrap up so that kind of brings us to the you know a bit of or walks us through your journey and even looks a bit into the future great time to transition to the two questions i always ask the end of each episode so we'll go ahead and dive on or jump to those now um first question i always ask is along your journey what was the worst business decision you ever made and what'd you learn from it uh staying in a bad partnership for a long time like it took me about three years to really decide like you know i want to leave the sperm and uh kind of stay taking a step back um i think i knew all along like you know the partnership started not to work and it was like you know it was creating toxic environment for our employees so uh i take full responsibility of like you know creating that culture uh became me and like my partner and in addition to that like you know for our employees so you know if you think if i knew better and like you know myself i will make that decision much quicker for myself my for my partner and also our employees well and i think you know that one's always a hard one in the sense that i definitely get hey we have a partner that we've brought on he's been with me or he or she has been with me for a while you know and we you know it may not always be the best partnership but we don't want to wreck it or you know how do you make an exit and how do you make that transition and so you oftentimes stay in that business arrangement because it's been you know it's something that you know and you've been doing it for a while but it doesn't always make sense and so i think that that's certainly an easy one an easy mistake to learn but also a good lesson to learn or an easy mistake to make but a good lesson to learn is that you know sometimes if you are in a partnership it's not just affecting you it affects the firm and infects the employees it makes it whether or not you have job satisfaction and whether or not the business is successful and if it's not working either look to change it or look to adjust it possible or not then you need to make an exit or making a change and so definitely a great lesson to learn from second question i always ask is if you're talking to someone that's just getting into a startup or a small business would be the one piece of advice you'd give them uh i say people people people who you're gonna hire is like you know most important uh as a small business owner that's what i always think about and our culture well our confirm like we always talk about higher slow fire fire fast so even like you know we do our best to hire people based on culture and our values it doesn't always turn out um turned as a good hire so we need to uh be transparent and like you know we try to like set the goals and milestone for them so that we can quickly assess are they really good fit for our company oh and i think that that is it's a great way to you know to look at and i think that you need to i would you know i would say that you know hiring is always a difficult thing and it's always one where i think everybody thinks that they are great at no they're great at reading people great at hiring people and if i was a boss i'd do it differently and then you get into it and you realize you know finding the right people it's not even just are they talented but are they the right fit for the culture do they have the do they get along with the co-workers and the culture we have do they have the skills do they have the work ethic do they you know all those things come into and it's always much harder and so i think that is figuring out that process slowing it down figuring out what works what doesn't work and focusing on the people to build your business is a great takeaway and a great piece of advice well as we wrap up this episode if people want to reach out to you they want to be a customer they want to be a client they want to be a investor they want to be an employee they want to be your next best friend any or all of the above what's the best way to reach out to your contact or find out more yeah through our website is the best and our website address is h i t o llc.com so it's hito llc.com all right well i definitely encourage people to check out the website connect and find out more because definitely a lot of resources there and you're looking to save some money for your business with some with some tax uh tax assistance definitely a worthwhile uh connection to be made well thank you again yuko for coming on the podcast it's been a fun it's been a pleasure now for all of you that are listeners if you have your own journey to tell and you'd like to be a guest on the podcast certainly feel free to go to inventiveguest.com apply to be on the show a couple more things um if you would as a listener if you can make sure to click subscribe make sure to click share leave us a review we want to make sure that everyone finds out about all these awesome episodes and last but not least if you ever need help with your patents your trademarks or anything else with the business just go to strategymeeting.com grab some time with us to chat we're always here to help thank you again yuko for coming on the podcast and wish the next leg of your journey even better than the last thank you so much devin for having me

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