Main Street News May 2012

Pino Bacinello, CBI, M&AMI, CMEA, CSBA

Chairman’s Message


This is a special time. We are only weeks away from our first annual conference in San Antonio Texas and are knee deep in transition. SmithBucklin and their staff are supportive to the transition to Meeting Expectations (ME). Both organizations and their teams have been working diligently to coordinate efforts to make your June San Antonio Conference a success.

In addition to adding to your personal and client value by the Conference education, networking, workshops and new events you also have the opportunity to meet our new Meeting Expectation’s leadership and staff. Chet Walden, M&A Source Chairman and I are excited to introduce them to you.

In my January opening message, I promised to be more open, more accessible and to provide more value to your Practice. In San Antonio as in Phoenix last year, we will offer a Town Hall Meeting in order to provide you the opportunity to ask questions of your leadership. In addition, we want to hear of your needs, and benefits to improve your brokerage practice. Your membership is important to us. If you are unable to attend, please do send your thoughts, messages and ideas to the Idea Bank.


Karl M. Kirsch, CAE

Executive Director’s Message

karl-kirschIn regards to the announcement about a change in management companies, I would first like to thank SmithBucklin for their many years of service to the organizations and also welcome Meeting expectations as our new management company. I would also like to introduce the new IBBA and M&A Source Executive Director Karl M. Kirsch, CAE. Karl has been with Meeting Expectations since December 2002, and currently serves as a vice president. His main responsibility is to lead client teams into successful execution of association objectives. Through his direct interactions with client boards and senior leadership, he has been able to leverage his considerable association management experience to help associations move positively towards their objectives, increase membership, and maximize return on investment.

Prior to Meeting Expectations, Karl worked in association management for nearly 15 years as executive director and in director level positions over membership, technical divisions, certification programs, and the implementation of continuous improvement efforts. He also worked for a couple of years as an analyst with a third party due diligence firm focused on the power generation and paper manufacturing industries.

Karl holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Engineering Technology from the State University of New York College at Buffalo and a Master of Science in Technology Management from the Stetson School of Business at Mercer University.


Marcie Woolworth, CBI, Fellow of the IBBA

Message From the Membership Chair

woolworthHow many times can we say thank you? I want to especially thank the Membership Committee for their time and commitment this year in helping with all of the projects. They include Mark, Sandy, Melinda, Julie, Glorianne, David, Michael, and Ken. We will have a Membership Table at the Conference in San Antonio and hope you will stop by and say hello.

We hope that you have been able to use the Hotel Discount Program with “Local Hospitality” one of our newest membership benefits. We hope to be able to give you the instructions on how to set up your own account very soon.

Please feel free to contact me with any additional benefits you would like to have us pursue. Remember the Alamo!

Marcie R. Woolworth, Chair

My contact information is: 970-663-9400 and email: [email protected]


Scott Bushkie, CBI, M&AMI

Marketing Committee

bushkieAffiliate competition: The program is off and running and someone who attends this year’s conference at San Antonio will get an all expensed paid trip to next year’s IBBA conference to include airfare, hotel, IBBA conference fees and any and all courses! BUT you have to go to this year’s conference and your affiliate organization must be the overall winner of the competition. There will be other incentives for the affiliate organizations as well. Sign up now to give yourself a chance at the grand prize!

Video project: We have limited openings left for the video testimonial project that will also allow you to shoot your own commercial while you are there with the videographer. It will allow you to highlight you and your company which could be sent out to perspective sellers or put on your website. Go to and click on “events” and then click on video link to sign up… it is that easy! Or click on the link at the bottom of this article. We will be sending out questions ahead of time that we will ask and setting up a schedule so we can give away as many free commercials as possible.

Survey update: We are in the final stages of partnering with Pepperdine University who is a specialist at not only conducting surveys and analyzing the information but also has a large network of media contacts to help IBBA become the “voice” of mainstreet business sales and lower middle market business sales, and trends. Look for more information at the conference with the first survey most likely being sent out in July to report on the 2nd quarter results of 2012.


Spring 2012 Conference

Save the Date: June 4 – 9

ibba-main-street-news-july-2012-spring-conference-1We are excited about this excellent event in San Antonio, TX at the Hyatt Regency Riverwalk June 4 – 9 and hope to see you there.

We are also excited about filming the event for a video promo for the IBBA along with filming volunteers who will be giving testimonials about why the IBBA event and association has helped them succeed.


The Threat That Binds Us – Part 2: Steve Wain, CBI, M&AMI

Our Competitive Opportunity

wainLast month, we discussed the issue of ‘Ignorance’ in the marketplace, and its impact to us, as Business Brokers and Intermediaries. The challenge that we all face is that the marketplace for our services is greater than the opportunity we have to service it.

Here’s an example. Mr. Business Owner A has been diligently working in his business since the day he took control of it after his father decided to retire. Mr. A’s two daughters and son don’t want to have anything to do with the business because they want a different life than their father – they want more freedom, travel time, and a different experience they saw their father live through. Of course, Mr. A. now has come to the conclusion that he should sell his business. The problem is Mr. A doesn’t know how to sell it. So what does he do? He calls his attorney who suggests hire a CPA to see what the company is worth. The outcome: A poor sale process, possibly poor valuation, and an ignorant seller.


Ron Chernak, CPA, CBI, M&AMI

Member Spotlight

ron-chernakIn March of 2012 we celebrated the thirtieth anniversary of the founding of my firm. Although I didn’t know it at the time, my education in accounting and law and my career path, including coming from a family of entrepreneurs, practicing law with a large Chicago firm, and spending time in the trenches with a mentor who put together a mini-conglomerate, funneled me into becoming a dealmaker. Like most things in life the more you give the more you get, and the time that I have spent on committees, industry boards, and as Chairman of the IBBA and M&A Source and returned far more than I have contributed.

One of the undisclosed dividends of being a deal maker is the satisfaction of helping people achieve the American Dream. Earlier this year, I sold a business for a couple that bought the business through me 29 years ago. Over the years the business had put two sons through school, taught them a strong work ethic, provided a nice life style and funded their retirement. I have another long term client that has completed five transactions with the firm and we have assisted his son on two different transactions. Loyalty like this doesn’t happen unless you surround yourself with great people. Many of you who have contacted my firm over the years, have interfaced with my Office Manager, of over 22 years, Lynn Lage, and may have met Ron Brasch and Charlie Jones, both CBIs with about 14 and 9 years, respectively, of tenure with the firm. Our newest dealmaker, George Pardo, will be in San Antonio sitting for his CBI exam after being in the industry for about six months.

This has always been a challenging business due to the multiple disciplines that are involved in the business transfer process, but it also has can be very lucrative and personally rewarding. If one works hard operates with integrity and is open to new ideas and technology, I believe that we have the ability to prosper during the next several years.


John Johnson, MBA, CBI, M&AMI, Fellow of the IBBA

Member Spotlight

john-johnsonJohn sold his distribution business, and then went “on scout for next”. Returning to employment lacked appeal. He threw ingredients into a bag; corporate expertise in: strategy, acquisitions, economic valuation, feasibility analyses and business development. Mixed in with engineering and an advanced business degree seasoned by success in business ownership, add strong measures of passion for midsized family businesses and add experience driven empathy with their owners.

Shaking the bag for an answer, he happened upon a Tom West article about business brokers. Business brokerage popped out as “next”. That was 25 years ago.

After a few years struggling on his own, John went to an IBBA conference in Atlantic City. There, he discovered jackpots full of knowledge and experience for boosting success. He became an IBBA regular and a true believer.

Through the years, peers allowed John to work to advance our profession. Next to serving clients, John finds his greatest professional joys have come in working for our industry and earning peers’ respect, such as opportunities…


Keith McLeod, CBI

From the Editor’s Desk

keith-mcleodPino opens our newsletter highlighting what dedicated members are doing to contribute to our industry in addition to running their practices coming through a difficult time period. They are to be congratulated. New members and some of the old timers should look at IBBA’s service menu and join a committee. Your talents are needed and will be appreciated. Deals are occurring and prospects are open to discussing working with us. Indications are it will be a banner year. Here is my business tip for this month:

Start Saying No: Keith McLeod

  1. Get rid of old baggage; low return buyers, unsaleable listings, underperforming staff suck up your time, money and energy. It poisons you.
  2. Notify Buyers you will work on on a fee basis, and transfer poor listings to a competitor for a referral fee or cancel.
  3. Dismiss staff & hire new staff. Lots of good people looking for work. Teach them a fee only basis.
  4. Assess your business model and make changes.
  5. Reduce meetings
  6. Delegate buy and sell activities to your Clients to be involved and committed to the process.
  7. Subcontract boring and time consuming work you don’t do well, and hire a talented assistant who would enjoy working with you.
  8. Avoid scope creep
  9. Stratify your Clients, invest in the best, and drop the bottom 10% after six months.
  10. Establish a 90 day timeline to focus performance.
  11. We produce outcomes. That becomes our focus, has a value and what we’re paid for.

What will you eliminate to lead an inspired life?

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