An Interview with Elizabeth from The LoCo Experience Podcast

Episode Description:

In this episode, you’ll get to hear an interview that your host, Elizabeth Ledoux, did with Curt Bear on The LoCo Experience Podcast. Elizabeth’s story is an essential part of The Business Transition Roadmap, and you’ll get to hear all about her life and journey into the business transition world as well as her passion for helping business owners take their next steps and start new adventures. Tap or click the play button below to listen to: An Interview with Elizabeth from The LoCo Experience Podcast.

Check out Curt Bear and The LoCo Experience Podcast:

Connect with Elizabeth and the Transition Strategists:
This episode was produced by Story On Media & Marketing:

An Interview with Elizabeth from The LoCo Experience Podcast Transcript

[00:00:00] Seth Silvers: Hey everybody. This is Seth. Usually I am behind the scenes as the producer of the podcast, but on today’s episode, it’s a little bit unique. So we wanted to give you some context today. We’re gonna share with you Elizabeth’s story, which is an essential part of the business transition roadmap. And to do that, we actually wanna share an interview that she had with one of our good friends, Kurt Bayer on his podcast, the Loco experience podcast.

[00:00:25] This was a couple months ago, but we felt like Kurt did such a great job capturing Elizabeth’s story that we figured why try to do it again? Let’s just share it here. So we encourage you to check out the Loco experience podcast, so you can find the links in the show notes below, um, and also just to send some love to our friend, Kurt bear over there without further ado.

[00:00:46] Curt Bear: Welcome to the episode. My guest today was Elizabeth Ledoux the founder and CEO of transition strategist, an international succession and transition planning company headquartered right here in Fort Collins, Colorado. We talked about her earliest days in business and relatively young transition to consultancy where she now talls more than 25 years of experience.

[00:01:06] Elizabeth shares principles from her newest book. It’s a journey. And throughout the show, she shares abundantly from her special knowledge and experience. We also spent time discussing best practices for peer advisory groups like Loco think tank Elizabeth was a longtime chair for the women president’s organization and currently serves in the same role for tiger 21.

[00:01:25] If you’re like me, you’re going to love Elizabeth. And this episode is full of golden business nuggets in a super crucial business area. Successful leadership transition.

[00:01:36] Let’s have some fun.

[00:01:44] Welcome to the Loco experience podcast. I’m your host Kurt bear. This show is produced by me and my team and sponsored by my small business Loco think tank. And sometimes others episodes feature a range of local and regional business and community leaders. As guests in a conversational interview format, our guests are interesting and successful people with unique business journeys and the more business education and unvarnished truth we can uncover the better you’ll feel like you really know our guests after each episode.

[00:02:11] And if I’m doing my job well. Listeners will find business principles and tips from their journey and a greater appreciation for each of our guests woven into these long format. Experience. Episodes are occasional thought. Bubbles episodes, topically focused snippets of five to 15 minutes where our guests unfold important and timely business truths.

[00:02:29] And also I’ll read the local perspective blog posts because I’m lazy to prefer to listen than to read. And maybe you do too. Thanks for tuning in. And if you like to show, please subscribe, review and share it with your favorite people.

[00:02:45] Welcome back to the Loco experience podcast. This is your host Kurt bear, and I’m joined today by Elizabeth Ledoux. And Elizabeth is the CEO founder and all the things, uh, in many respects at the transition strategist. And she’s also the author of four books. Um, one of which I was just gifted and, uh, it’s called it’s a journey, which is her most.

[00:03:04] And so, um, I think let’s just set the stage a little bit, Elizabeth, and talk to me about the transition strategist. What, what is that firm and what do they do?

[00:03:13] Elizabeth Ledoux: Yeah. So, um, first thank you Kurt for having me here, cuz this is a pleasure. And um, yeah, so the transition strategist, it is a firm consulting firm that helps businesses transition generationally successfully.

[00:03:29] So we work with companies, um, internationally. Um, our work is primarily done virtually we’re in person now and then, but we do a lot of, lot of work virtually and um, again, help generation the incoming generation learn how to take over a business yeah. And how to run it and we help the generation leaving, um, trust and do well.

[00:03:51] Curt Bear: Yeah. Yeah. I love that. And. You’re just another example of people with like global enterprises that choose to live in Northern Colorado. And we’re just blessed by that. So exactly. Thanks for sharing today. I’m sure people will be tuning in, on, on some nuggets in this conversation. How, how did you get in?

[00:04:06] And I guess first, before we go there, talk to me about your team and how you engage with businesses, how you find your clients, who are those clients, I guess?

[00:04:15] Elizabeth Ledoux: Yeah. So a lot of questions. There’s a lot of question there, a few in there. So, um, our team, our team is actually amazing. So I’ve been a consultant now for over 30 years.

[00:04:25] Wow. Which is a long time. And over that timeframe have figured out how to build a team that actually works in a consulting firm. So we’ve got, I’ve got a, um, project, we’ve got project coordinators. We’ve got other consultants that work with us, um, full on back office. And so, yeah, we’re a full operating company, all virtual.

[00:04:48] Wow. And

[00:04:48] Curt Bear: has it been always

[00:04:49] Elizabeth Ledoux: all virtual. Um, many years ago, I actually had a firm in Denver. Okay. And I helped to found an international consultancy. So we had 25 different locations across the world. Whoa. Yeah. We were Australia, Europe, Canada, and the United States. And I decided that I wanted to be international.

[00:05:10] So I opened up, um, a Canadian company okay. Up in Calgary. And so I had an office there and we had to figure out, Hmm, this was at least probably 15, 20 years ago. Right. How to operate virtually and ever since I did that, that’s been, my dream is to be able to live anywhere and do work anywhere and have a team that can do the same.

[00:05:30] Wow. So yeah, long time we’ve been virtual. And

[00:05:33] Curt Bear: when did you land in, in your, in the Windsor area? Is that right?

[00:05:36] Elizabeth Ledoux: Yes. So, um, I actually grew up in Denver. Okay. And so landed in this kind of Windsor for Collins area about 11 years ago. Okay. Okay.

[00:05:46] Curt Bear: Yep. And what drew you up if I might ask, uh,

[00:05:50] Elizabeth Ledoux: Truly my, so my husband is a helicopter pilot.

[00:05:54] We got tired of living in Denver and needed access to the airport. Yeah. I also have family up here, my mom and dad live up here. Okay. And so we just came, we came north, cuz it was just as easy to get to DIA and um, a beautiful place

[00:06:08] Curt Bear: to be. Yeah. Awesome. Well, I, we, we love it. And uh, you know, I got here in 99 and was like I’m home.

[00:06:14] Yeah. It just feels that way. And, and still does 20 years later. That’s so neat. So let’s uh, let’s go back to like, who is Elizabeth? Like, talk to me about your, your family, where you came from, where you grew up in in, was it in Denver? What you grew up?

[00:06:29] Elizabeth Ledoux: I grew up in Denver. Yeah. So I grew up kind of in south Denver.

[00:06:34] Okay. And, um, just had a, you know, great childhood went through high school there. Cherry Creek high

[00:06:40] Curt Bear: school sports, uh, a. Brilliant person, or what was your, uh, what was your like school experience like? Yeah,

[00:06:47] Elizabeth Ledoux: so my, my school experience, I like science and math. Okay. And, um, love skiing and love being outdoors.

[00:06:55] And I always was kind of a runner and just did a variety of different things. Played golfed a little bit of that. Wow. Yeah. But my main thing was skiing. And I’ll tell you more about that later. Um, I actually came to Fort Collins to school for a whole semester. Okay. After high school and decided it was too far away from the ski area.

[00:07:15] So I ended up at Colorado school of mine. Oh, great. And I ended up getting a degree in petroleum engineering and then I was, I drilled oil Wells for a while. Interesting. Designed and drilled them. Wow.

[00:07:27] Curt Bear: Yep. And what was the technology like at that time in comparison to today?

[00:07:32] Elizabeth Ledoux: Um, completely different. Yeah.

[00:07:34] Yeah. We were doing vertical Wells. um, horizontal Wells really tracking. Wasn’t really a thing yet. Um, we did a little bit of that, but not like they do now. Sure. Yeah. So yeah, totally just different. And I was mostly in Oklahoma, Texas, a little bit in California. Okay. So yeah, no Colorado drilling at

[00:07:52] Curt Bear: the time.

[00:07:53] And how was school of mines? I know they pretty much only take like super bright kids there. Right.

[00:07:58] Elizabeth Ledoux: they, they do. They do. And that petroleum, that petroleum school is one of the best in the world. And so it was interesting. I, you either love Colorado school of mines as a student or you don’t. Right. And I happened to enjoy it completely.

[00:08:13] So I was completely immersed in it. It was close enough to go skiing if I wanted to. Yeah. So close to the mountain. And, um, yeah, fell in love with it.

[00:08:20] Curt Bear: Well, and talk to me about skiing a little bit. That’s obviously one of your joys and were you like semi-pro or, you know, working on anything special?

[00:08:28] Elizabeth Ledoux: I ended up being on the Colorado school of mine ski team.

[00:08:31] So most scholarship attached,

[00:08:33] Curt Bear: those not chip at all,

[00:08:34] Elizabeth Ledoux: but, um, had a great time doing it. I think there was as much beer as racing involved, but had a great time. And, um, yeah, so skiing is a big passion of mine. It’s a place where I get to go and, um, think and, you know, be on top of a mountain and you

[00:08:52] Curt Bear: don’t think about, that’s just a great time, much of anything else when you’re swooshing

[00:08:55] Elizabeth Ledoux: down a mountain, not really, not really.

[00:08:57] You just get to enjoy. And there’s a little bit of, um, dad venture and some other things that go along with that that are just

[00:09:04] Curt Bear: beautiful. I’m, I’m a motorcyclist, uh, much more than a skier. And I think it’s kind of a similar experience to my mind. Yeah. Little

[00:09:10] Elizabeth Ledoux: speed involved. Yeah.

[00:09:11] Curt Bear: Full yeah, bushy wooy and if you’re there fully, it’s easier to be present fully than it is in so much of.

[00:09:18] Day to day. Exactly. And

[00:09:20] Elizabeth Ledoux: so, yeah. It’s yeah, I like it. It’s an individual sport, but it’s also social. Yeah. So, yeah. Yeah.

[00:09:26] Curt Bear: Well, and one of the nice things about skiing or running or bicycling and stuff is if you wanna drink more beer than you should it’s okay. Because you’re burning all these calories.

[00:09:34] Elizabeth Ledoux: maybe

[00:09:36] Curt Bear: That’s good. So, uh, so you roll off to the low country then, uh, at the start of your career, Oklahoma, Texas, whatnot, right? Um, just living the petroleum engineer’s existence. I gather.

[00:09:46] Elizabeth Ledoux: Yep. I was, and then I ended up having, um, my first son. Okay. And at the time oil and gas was really not doing well. It was kind of late eighties, so it wasn’t doing very well.

[00:09:57] And so I ended up, um, deciding that I wanted to be a mom instead of be a month off month on cuz they were sending the drilling engineers were mostly going off. And so yeah, being on an offshore rig for a month and leaving my brand new baby, I’m like, that is not happening.

[00:10:16] Curt Bear: So yeah. I gathered that you, uh, fell in love and got married along the way here as well did.

[00:10:20] Yeah. Uh, and we’ll get more into the, the family and love story, but tell me about that. Were you like out of college, in the work of due life and met another oil drilling guy or,

[00:10:30] Elizabeth Ledoux: yeah, I met, I met, he was my first husband and I met him at, um, mines. Okay. And so, yeah, we got married not too long after that. We kind of stuck together and we got married shortly after that and had two boys.

[00:10:43] Okay. And they are, yeah, they were amazing. And so they’re just wonderful. And so anyway, I ended up being a mom and when I, when I decided to leave petroleum engineering, I know that I’m a, I am a mom that needed something else to do fair. So yeah, just fair enough. And so, and

[00:11:01] Curt Bear: those are some of the, the greatest untapped resources in, in the country really is moms that.

[00:11:06] Wanna be there for their kid, but have a brain that just won’t quit and wants to do things and interact with other adults regularly.

[00:11:13] Elizabeth Ledoux: Still. Exactly, exactly. And so I ended up, um, I decided that I was going to start a consulting company. Okay. And, um, navigated that for a little while. And I’ve been in consulting ever since.

[00:11:24] I,

[00:11:24] Curt Bear: I imagine though, at the beginning it was not like transition consulting. It was consulting on petroleum engineering cuz you didn’t really have those other skills yet. Um,

[00:11:33] Elizabeth Ledoux: actually, so I was in Colorado cuz I wanted to, you know, have my kids grow up here with my family and I had, my dad had been an orthodontist.

[00:11:44] And so from the age of 13 I worked in his office and I did all of this work. And then at, from mines, I knew computers and computers were new. They right. Like there were wires in the walls. And plugs and you know sure. Yeah. All different kinds of things.

[00:11:58] Curt Bear: We’re figuring out how to run email and whatnot there,

[00:12:01] Elizabeth Ledoux: email wasn’t hardly even a thing then, right.

[00:12:04] It was, yeah. That tells you how old I am. So,

[00:12:07] Curt Bear: um, you’re lovely. And you act lot younger than you are. I’m

[00:12:09] Elizabeth Ledoux: sure. Thanks. Anyway. Yeah. So I, um, I started working as a contractor, putting in systems for dentists and orthodontists that were, you know, they were like 50 or $70,000 back then. Okay. In the eighties to put these in with all the wiring and everything.

[00:12:27] So I just did that and ended up then consulting for them. And I would do logos cause I have a little, you know, little art artist in me too. Yeah. Yeah. And so I did some, uh, yeah. Logos and letters and you were their easy button, taught everybody how to use the

[00:12:41] Curt Bear: computers, like teach us how to do this, make that work, better, fix this process.

[00:12:45] Yeah. Bringing some structure. Cuz those medical businesses are notorious where they, you know, they’re doctors and like they’re not passionate about running a business. Right.

[00:12:55] Elizabeth Ledoux: Yeah. They’re busy. Yes.

[00:12:57] Curt Bear: Well, they’re already busy. Mm-hmm too. Yeah. The best run medical offices aren’t like really run by the doctors or the dentist.

[00:13:04] Usually they’ve got a professional in there doing it. Exactly. Or in your case, uh, a young person that’s learning all the things and putting it all

[00:13:10] Elizabeth Ledoux: together for ’em that’s right. Yeah. And we ended up, um, to me, I learned more and more about private companies. Mm-hmm and so then I started doing, I went and got, um, some education on strategic work.

[00:13:26] Okay. And so started, I’m a great strategist. And so I started learning actually how to do that, um, how to build great strategies and also implement them. Yeah. And then I found out, do you know that only 9% statistically, only 9% of companies that spend money on a strategic plan actually implement them?

[00:13:47] Whew. It’s terrible. Yeah. So again, I don’t like that very much. I’m I’m like, well, let’s just get the strategy, get it done and move on. So I, about 20 years ago started studying people. Mm-hmm , which some of the things in the book are, you know, focused around that. Yeah. And that’s part of the foundation, but just started studying people.

[00:14:06] And how do you get people to shift and change and shift mindsets and actually implement and, you know, do things well. Yeah.

[00:14:17] Curt Bear: Can we do, um, a thought bubble on that? Like let’s just zero in on that. How do you get people to shift and, and ch learn new things and accept the that’s coming regardless?

[00:14:30] Elizabeth Ledoux: Yeah. So foundationally, uh, and I have some models and different things, but foundationally, um, unless you believe that whatever you’re gonna do is gonna make a dramatic difference and for a positive for you.

[00:14:42] And also for others, you won’t leave where you are and you have to want it so much. That you’re willing to give up because every single time there’s change, um, there’s loss. You give up the old

[00:14:55] Curt Bear: ways. Yeah.

[00:14:56] Elizabeth Ledoux: Well, yeah. There’s always loss. Yeah. And we hope there’s a gain. And if the gain, if you’re in your mind, see that the gain may not be greater than the loss you’ll stay where you are because it’s comfortable easy.

[00:15:11] I don’t have to do anything, you know, and everybody, the relationships don’t have to change either. Yeah. So it’s just an interesting thing. So when we do our work, one of the things that we, well, a foundation is people first. Right? Right. And then your objectives, your why, and there are a lot of books out there on why mm-hmm, , you know, and starting with your, why your, well, the reason, one of the reasons is because your, why is your reason for moving?

[00:15:36] Yeah. It’s your target.

[00:15:37] Curt Bear: And everybody might have a little different why. On the whole

[00:15:40] Elizabeth Ledoux: team. Absolutely. Yeah. Everybody does because we’re all different, right? Yeah. And we wanna our vision of our, my vision of my life. And what I want in mind is different than what you want. You want a motorcycle and I want skis.

[00:15:52] So does it

[00:15:53] Curt Bear: start with like, asking people about their wise and stuff like that when you’re trying to Institute

[00:15:58] Elizabeth Ledoux: these kind of big changes? Abso yes, absolutely. Yeah. What do you want? And especially when you have multiple people, yeah. We go into companies where, um, partners will have worked together for 20 years and they’ll be best of friends and they’re all aligned and they’re building and growing together.

[00:16:14] And then one day, one of ’em says, you know, I think I I’m done. Yeah. And then all of a sudden it’s like, well, wait, you can come.

[00:16:22] Curt Bear: Yeah. How do we navigate

[00:16:23] Elizabeth Ledoux: this? Yeah, because we’ve always been together and now we still want to be together, but I have to help you as my partner go and live the life you want.

[00:16:33] Hopefully you’re gonna help me do the same. And we’re both gonna be whole, and we’re gonna keep the business world not gonna over leverage

[00:16:39] Curt Bear: this thing or this or that to make this happen.

[00:16:41] Elizabeth Ledoux: Right. And, and we all are tangled up with, um, financial dependency. Sure. And also experience and knowledge dependency, because hopefully if you’re leaving, you made a difference

[00:16:55] Curt Bear: for sure.

[00:16:55] And I was thinking to myself that, uh, I’ve seen more than once where the founder wants to pass the business along to one of their children and the children are at least nervous and sometimes downright scared. And they’re not sure that they want this gig or not.

[00:17:11] Elizabeth Ledoux: Yes. Yep. That happens often. And, um, Yeah.

[00:17:15] The, the number one reason that I found that businesses fail when, when people leave is cuz usually the, the owner left too soon. Mm-hmm um, and the people aren’t ready. And so there’s, you know, um, it’s big to take on a business and if you’re a child and a child could be 50 years old yep. I could be 50 and they’re gonna do their very best.

[00:17:39] However, um, you know, their knowledge, their skills, how they’d approach it, the economy, everything goes into that. And so, um, business is risky. Yeah. And you can lose your home for sure. and lose a lot of things. Yeah. So it’s, so you have to really think about it. So yeah. Fear is good, but also, um, yeah, working through it and helping them to understand and gain confidence is huge.

[00:18:06] Curt Bear: I guess, do you see that transition sometimes where there’s there’s fear, but Earnest’s desire, but it just takes the training ground before they’re ready. Or do you, do you do some personality profiling and things like that as part of your research to understand if they’re cut from the right cloth, so to speak.

[00:18:23] And is there a right cloth for

[00:18:25] Elizabeth Ledoux: entrepreneurs? Yeah, definitely. There is a right cloth. Well, I’ll say there are characteristics, so, um, you can see the engineer kind of coming out of me. There’s um, a talk that I do and there are entrepreneurial characteristics for sure. Um, and there was a study done a while ago where about 40 or 45% of entrepreneurial characteristics can be inherited genetically mm-hmm

[00:18:54] Um, and then the other are learned mm-hmm so, and some of the places that you learn are from parents or people around you that you grew up with, you’ll see, you know, entrepreneurs and. And that, um, but some of the characteristics are the ability to, um, when you fall down, get back up on your own. Yeah. Yeah.

[00:19:13] Um, you really aren’t fearful

[00:19:16] Ad: this episode is sponsored by lo think tank logo. Think tank provides peer collaboration for business owners. We build smart, safe places to help business leaders navigate every stage of the business journey. And we love what we do and who we do it with our model features, gift back mind, business veterans in the role of Loco facilitators.

[00:19:34] And we’re always looking for abundance minded individuals to add to our membership facilitated team Loco community, or to feature on this podcast listeners of this podcast who go on to become members of Loco think tank get their sixth month of membership for free. Just mention the lo experience podcast on your application to learn more.

[00:19:52] Visit our that’s L O C O think

[00:19:59] Curt Bear: Right. I don’t have fear. No, honestly, like that’s one of the characteristics of me, even if I’ve been in close to being in a fist fight of defending, you know, a, a, I’m not scared. I might get my face beat in. Cause I’m pretty skinny and don’t have any training but I don’t really have fear even on the motorcycle.

[00:20:16] I have sensibilities. I don’t wanna crash. Right.

[00:20:19] Elizabeth Ledoux: But I’m not afraid. You’re thoughtful, calculated risks. Sure. But yeah, definitely. Um, you have a, yeah, you just don’t have fear. Like some people would mm-hmm and um, yeah. The other thing is entrepreneurs typically will see an opportunity in a problem mm-hmm so instead of seeing a problem and going, no, you know, that’s a problem and we can’t get it, but you also end up being able to contribute to the community and you take care of a lot of people.

[00:20:46] Yeah. And so back to kind of this book concept is when a, when an entrepreneur, founder leaves a company, typically they’ve, you know, done their very best to provide jobs. um, the business typically will contribute to the community, whether it’s a soccer team or, you know, the arts or something. Yeah. A local

[00:21:07] Curt Bear: medical foundation.

[00:21:09] Elizabeth Ledoux: Yeah. Whatever food bank. Um, so, so these businesses actually, you know, aren’t just about the owner, they’re about all the families and all of the people that, you know, use the business. And, and so, um, as I think as an owner, um, and that leader, that responsibility, when I see people trying to transition, they’re trying to figure out how the business continues to do that.

[00:21:34] Yeah. Yeah. Without them leaving it when and

[00:21:36] Curt Bear: accepting that mantle isn’t for the fainthearted necessarily. No, uh, it’s a, you know, almost like getting into politics in a way, especially in smaller communities like Fort Collins and Loveland and things like that. Exactly. So who are your clients? Are they, you know, the, the.

[00:21:52] 10 and 20 and 50 or $200 million companies, a lot of times that are family owned, but looking to, to set up that next generation and it might not even be a family generation, right? Like some of the next owners, or maybe most of the time, it won’t be strictly family involved. Yeah,

[00:22:08] Elizabeth Ledoux: definitely. So the, our clients tend to be businesses that are functioning.

[00:22:14] Um, typically they have an owner and a couple of people okay. That are working with them. Um, they can be any, I mean, we’ve worked with under a million in annual revenue. Okay. The, the typical size that we’ll work with is probably five to, I don’t know, 20 maybe. Okay. 25. Yeah. It’s that? It’s the one that’s going well, yeah, that has.

[00:22:38] Enough of a value yeah. That if they want to transition it to somebody internal, like an employee, for instance. So let’s take that one. Yep. Or a set of employees, um, that typically the employees don’t have the money to just go say, Hey, here’s a few million dollars in cash. Right. Or

[00:22:56] Curt Bear: even, Hey, Mr. Banker, I’ve I could, I scraped up a hundred thousand.

[00:23:00] All I need is 3 million more.

[00:23:02] Elizabeth Ledoux: Exactly. Yes. They, they don’t have that. And so, um, that’s why I think of business transition in those situations as a journey. Mm-hmm right. So that, so yeah, three foundations are one name of the book. It’s a journey, um, to put people first and then three, this roadmap is your best tool.

[00:23:20] Hmm. Yeah. So when you’re doing that, um, those are clients that they’re just trying to figure out how to keep the business whole, how to keep the culture going, how to continue to provide for the community. How to move on to their, not retirement, but next adventure. Right? Because typically that’s what they want.

[00:23:38] They’ve spent 20, 30 years. Yeah. 10 years. They wanna play more now. Oh yeah. Or go do something different, like have another passion because entrepreneurs get bored. Totally.

[00:23:47] Curt Bear: Yeah. , that’s one of my, uh, reasons for starting local think tank in a way is, is seeing these underutilized retired business owners that, um, and a lot of times that’s men.

[00:23:59] Right. And hopefully more and more women, but they. Bored and start, you know, golfing and drinking too much or chasing young girls and, and bad things happen when entrepreneurial type men get bored, especially, well, no,

[00:24:10] Elizabeth Ledoux: I know. Yeah. The they’re some of our most favorite types of people that, you know, our consultants are typically contractors and they’ll have, you know, a few they’ll be able to do as many projects as they want or not.

[00:24:23] But, um, yeah, those, those people that have been there done that yeah. And successfully figured it out. That’s

[00:24:28] Curt Bear: so useful. Some know. Yeah. Yeah. So what are some of the biggest stumbling blocks, um, that when you, when you’ve seen failures, not necessarily with your team in engaged, but, uh, that would’ve should have, could have kind of stories that what’s the hole that’s left behind when that founder owner tries to leave too early.

[00:24:47] Elizabeth Ledoux: Um, so couple of holes that I can think about one is that the, so I’ll start with one. One is that the successor or successors are left. Not knowing how to weather a bad time. Mm-hmm owners tend to want to make the business look good and, you know, and make it pretty kind of, it’s like, you know, cleaning your house before you’re gonna sell it.

[00:25:16] Mm-hmm you want it to, even if you’re not gonna get more money for it, you still want it to look good. Mm-hmm yeah. Cause you care about it. And so one thing is I’ve found that business owners want to transition in good times. Mm-hmm and sometimes it’s nice to transition in a challenging time. Um, just because, or at least have gone through a challenging time.

[00:25:36] Yeah. So that the new successor knows what it’s like. Yeah. To have to understand that. Yeah. Cuz it’s easier to run a business in good times and bad. Um, the other one is making sure that the, I find a hole where the successor doesn’t know something. So in one. In one of my talks that I do, um, and I reference Colorado school of mines.

[00:25:57] Okay. Right. Because I graduated, I graduated with honors. And so I come out of that school and it was a tough school. Um, so my example is that I had to go through and, you know, I had to pass calculus three, calculus three is pretty hard. Um, and if I would’ve been given a calculus three problem, even one year prior when I was in calculus two, I would have not, I wouldn’t have been able to solve the problem.

[00:26:25] Yeah. Not cuz I wasn’t capable, but because I didn’t have all the pieces. Yeah. I didn’t have the knowledge. And so I, I think about that and then, you know, some of these people that are coming in, especially if they’re much younger, cuz the, the gap in age, if. A parent bringing in a child that gap in age is at least probably 20 years.

[00:26:45] Curt Bear: Yeah. Could be 30, 30 is common these

[00:26:47] Elizabeth Ledoux: days. Right. And if you’re bringing in younger people, I mean the, the age gap used to maybe be five, 10 years, and now it’s grown to, you know, even non-family 15 years, 20 years. Sure. And so, so that’s like bringing in, you’re doing calculus three and they’re in

[00:27:03] Curt Bear: algebra.

[00:27:03] Right. Well, and, and worse than that potentially is the, the new boss comes in and he’s 15 years younger than the old timers that have been around for 20 years. And, you know, I knew you wouldn’t, you were NEHI to a grasshopper. What do you mean to be telling me how to run my division?

[00:27:18] Elizabeth Ledoux: Exactly. Yes. Yeah, definitely.

[00:27:21] Curt Bear: So, uh, so let’s get back into the life journey a little bit. And so. You’re you’re banging it out, getting some consulting work pretty regular. It sounds like, sounds like there was, you know, high demand for your services and ands me a little bit in terms of like, is this early two thousands by now or late nineties in the nineties?

[00:27:37] I, I don’t even know for sure where

[00:27:39] Elizabeth Ledoux: we’re at. Oh yeah. Well, I I’ve been a, I was in consulting for, I’ve been doing it for 30 years, so I’ve just continued to evolve. So

[00:27:47] Curt Bear: that was 91 when you started really?

[00:27:49] Elizabeth Ledoux: Yeah, probably about 90, 91. And then, um, and then I started learning about strategy mm-hmm and did that, I started that international consultancy and that was kind of in the late 19 hundreds and then, or yeah, 1990.

[00:28:06] Yeah. Yeah. And then, um, yeah, so then I, I. Continued on. I actually left that consultancy and went out on my own. Interesting and yep. Kept Calgary and kept Denver. And so I was working in, okay. My revenue was almost split 50 50 in both countries. Interesting.

[00:28:24] Curt Bear: Yeah. Is there Canadian root, uh, branch there somewhere or just, uh, great town for oil and companies generally and yeah, it’s

[00:28:32] Elizabeth Ledoux: pretty up there.

[00:28:33] It’s pretty up there. Well, I good skiing. It’s great. Yeah. Good skiing. It had a lot of, of, of good things, but how I ended up up there. Yeah. Um, was I, so as my kids, I really focused on my kids and it was one of my, I think of entrepreneurs. They, they do things, you know, and build their businesses around how they wanna live.

[00:28:54] Yeah. And, um, so I focused on my kids and when my youngest was 16 ish, I was gonna be a single right mom. With an empty nester. Right. And I thought, Hmm, what could I do? And so I actually went back to mines and talked to the head of the department who was the same person, um, when I graduated that’s five years ago.

[00:29:12] Yep. Same guy. And, um, so I went up there and I talked to him and I said, what do you think, should I go back into petroleum or should I stay doing what I’m doing? And he said, well, if you like the oil industry, um, go to Calgary and continue to do what you’re doing, because my knowledge of both my knowledge of sure, you know, background, those companies

[00:29:33] Curt Bear: plus have problems to solve and money to spend.

[00:29:35] And so go get ’em and help ’em.

[00:29:37] Elizabeth Ledoux: Yeah. So that’s when I opened up that, that’s when I opened up that Calgary office ING, that’s a two and a half hour flight, you can fly back and forth. And so I did that for many years.

[00:29:46] Curt Bear: Wow. And we’ve only, only in the last couple years, we’ve brought in a couple of, uh, several now, um, oil industry companies.

[00:29:55] You know, that are different service companies and things. And I I’ve, I never really learned much about it because as a banker, for most of my career, it was like, you know, just stay away from the oil stuff. It’s too scary. And, uh, I imagine that’s part of the challenge working with those, uh, companies as

[00:30:10] Elizabeth Ledoux: well.

[00:30:10] Yeah. Yeah. They they’re, um, when you look at a business they’re internal types of things, strengths and weaknesses that you influence, and then there’s all the external stuff mm-hmm, outside, right? That cause yeah, they’re either opportunities or threats and, um, oil and gas is so dependent on those external, you can have the best, I mean, the price gone from

[00:30:33] Curt Bear: business.

[00:30:33] Yeah. A nickel, a barrel up to 90 bucks or 85 bucks a barrel today or something like that. Right. It’s in the last

[00:30:39] Elizabeth Ledoux: 24 months in the last 24 months it’s been. Yeah. And so the, the oil and gas, industry’s a wild ride. Yeah.

[00:30:46] Curt Bear: Yeah. So, so you’re building this consultancy up there and kind of splitting time. You’re moming um, Tell me about maybe some highlights in the rest of that kind of intermediate journey and, and maybe even the road, two transition, uh,

[00:30:59] Elizabeth Ledoux: strategists.

[00:31:00] Yeah. Yeah. So, so I, um, I continued to do the consulting and, um, yeah, just grew and build that was when I wrote a couple of the initial books and developed a, a lot of intellectual property. Oh. So some, some nice, um, models and all the processes that we use in our company. Wow. We own, so yeah, they’re developed by me or, um, I purchased a couple of things from a couple of people.

[00:31:29] Very interesting. Yeah. So I don’t, yeah, I don’t, yeah. License

[00:31:33] Curt Bear: anything. You’re not a, you’re not a Maxwell guy or a toolkit of anybody else. And can I ask, um, like where you were inspired the most by, because there’s not that many super new ideas, but where did you learn how to create this stuff?

[00:31:45] Elizabeth Ledoux: This stuff.

[00:31:46] Um, so two big, two big influences in my. I’ll have to say probably three. Um, I, I started leasing some tools out of Australia. Okay. And became a, ran one consultant or a consulting firm. And that was the international consultancy that we put together. Okay. So that was a big influence cuz I learned strategic work there.

[00:32:12] Yeah. And used other people’s models for sure. Sure. Um, then I joined up with strategic coach. Okay. Which is Dan Sullivan. Oh yeah. I’ve heard that name. Yeah. And I was a Dan Sullivan student, um, directly by Dan for many years. Wow. And it was fun to go because, um, you know, a day, every quarter just to spend on building and thinking about the company and I would, I draw a lot and so I’m very visual mm-hmm and so I draw a lot and so I draw models so that I can explain what I’m trying to talk to people about.

[00:32:49] And so that’s where that.

[00:32:51] Curt Bear: Yeah. Well, and that’s how you can make complex things more simple sometimes to understand, I imagine. Yes.

[00:32:56] Elizabeth Ledoux: And then, um, last would be, uh, he’s a PhD psychologist that I was partners with. Okay. And so he came in to be a partner left and then we partnered again. Um, and he, and I developed a lot of, um, great models and fun things that he, yeah.

[00:33:13] The PhD side was where I started really learning about people. Yeah. And how to, how to shift their thinking.

[00:33:20] Curt Bear: Interesting. Yep. Um, and do you have some people outside of just your, your experience, do you have some psychology, uh, education as well? Or was it, uh, his, his PhD and your smarts and imagination to build, uh, diagrams and things to help people understand these elements?

[00:33:38] Elizabeth Ledoux: Yeah. So I do not have any official training as a psychologist. Sometimes. I think it’s 30 years of talking people into doing things I’m very, I can persuade people as well. . Um, but yeah, I, I learned from him. Yeah. And we worked on many, many clients and yeah. So, yeah. Yeah. So it’s just the, kind of the school of, um, experience.

[00:34:02] Curt Bear: And is there is, I mean, you wrote a whole big long book here and there’s a roadmap and things like that, but is there you, you mentioned, I think the, kind of the three pillars, um, to the it’s the journey people first and, and a roadmap. Yeah. Is there some like way points on the roadmap that you’d care to share with people listening in and, and wondering if they should buy this book or not

[00:34:23] Elizabeth Ledoux: sure?

[00:34:24] The, um, well, the, so in the book, um, I, we segmented it into two different portions and it’s a part of our process. So the one thing. I think is foundational in, when you’re getting ready to transition is start soon. You know, start the earlier you start, the more options you have. Yeah. So I’ll just say that I like that.

[00:34:48] Um, you know, with people, taxes, money, purchase, all of it. It, it just gives you so many more options to, and when you do this work, it’s like putting together pieces of a puzzle because the dilemmas are what keep us stuck. Right. And the dilemmas, the dilemma by definition is, um, that no matter which way I go, I have a belief that I’m going to get something I don’t want.

[00:35:13] Hmm. No matter which way I go. So, you know, it’s like, oh, I could do this, but then Sally’s gonna be mad at me or I could do this. And then, oh, my wife won’t like that. Or, and then, so you walk down these roads and the question is, is it true? Sally will be mad or is it true that your wife will be, you know, won’t like it, right.

[00:35:29] We don’t know. But they’re all things that we’re thinking about. So yeah, we

[00:35:33] Curt Bear: imagine we paint these pictures or, or the stories we tell ourselves is what I learned in a different workshop about what Sally’s gonna think. And we don’t even necessarily bother asking Sally, we just draw all these imagination problems.

[00:35:47] Elizabeth Ledoux: Yes. And then, and then we draw those and then we don’t move. Right. Because there are too many. Right. So, right. So doing this is like, you know, putting together pieces of a puzzle and it is, it’s not a linear process. Yeah. It’s not like if this and this and this and this, and then you end up at the end, it is, oh, if I do this, then that won’t work.

[00:36:07] So then I gotta go back to the beginning. Right, right. And retool. And we’ve

[00:36:11] Curt Bear: definitely got a problem in customer service here. We put these pieces into place that it’s not working. What are we gonna do about that or whatever that looks like? Yes.

[00:36:19] Elizabeth Ledoux: Or somebody leaves or somebody won’t. Yeah. So, um, so we started with this thing called the transition compass.

[00:36:26] Okay. And the transition compass has six questions and those six questions must, they will be answered by the time you leave. Okay. Um, whenever that is. And so by starting with the compass, you know, where you are today, it gives you a direction. And so the direction could be, um, for instance, I, I like using roadmaps and you’ll see that in the book.

[00:36:50] Uh, so if I’m sitting in four Collins and I’m thinking about going somewhere, right. A transition going somewhere, I could either go north. To Canada. I could go south to Mexico. Sure. Right. Or I could stay in the United States. Well, it’d be nice to know which direction you’re going. Yeah. So we start by just, you know, let’s just get a direction.

[00:37:12] Doesn’t have to be a pinpoint address. Yeah. Yeah. But let’s get a general direction, um, because it helps us to narrow and to organize and it helps you to also communicate. Yeah. So if you have a partner, a successor or, um, or even your advisors, like your CPA lawyer, all of those sure. You can actually start to talk about a direction.

[00:37:32] Yeah. And so the compass helps you to know of those big six questions. Which ones are you sure about? Which ones are you kind of sure. And which ones do you have? Absolutely. No idea. Right.

[00:37:43] Curt Bear: First time

[00:37:43] Elizabeth Ledoux: I’ve thought about this almost. Yeah, no idea. And then what, so that’s the first portion then take that and put that into a roadmap.

[00:37:52] So start today. And part of the journey is the answer an either validate the green. Yeah. Right? Yeah. Validate that and figure out the others figure out the yellow and the red, because you gotta figure ’em out. By the time

[00:38:05] Curt Bear: you go. I’m almost thinking about the, the game of life, that old game where you kind of wander around through these different things, but then in puzzle form.

[00:38:13] So you you’re like gotta build the road as, before you can walk there kind of thing. Yes.

[00:38:18] Elizabeth Ledoux: Yeah. That’s a great analogy. A great vision of that.

[00:38:22] Curt Bear: So, um, thank you. And, uh, I love the, the compass also it like helps you get a reading of where you’re at kind of that. Ooh. Or. Oh, we can, we can be fairly comfortable with this spot right here.

[00:38:35] Elizabeth Ledoux: Well, and even, you know, it’s sort of a fact, I think of I think of a phone and sometimes you don’t wanna really look, you know, you’re like, oh, the business, isn’t what I needed to be. Yeah. Or, oh, you know, I, I won’t get enough money or, oh, I don’t wanna look at my financials because I’ve, you know, invested everything I’ve had into this company.

[00:38:52] I really don’t even have, you know, a savings

[00:38:55] Curt Bear: hard thing. Right. Unless I can get a lot of money for this business, how am I gonna retire?

[00:38:59] Elizabeth Ledoux: Yes. So, and you know, every, I think people are fairly familiar with a phone, like, um, you know, maps. And if you pull up a map, one thing you, one thing the map has to know to give you directions is where you are today.

[00:39:15] Sure. Fair. Where you are at this very moment. And even though you may not like it, it’s true.

[00:39:20] Curt Bear: So I’m imagining, and, and maybe you could describe like a, um, you probably have lots of different kinds of engagements. You probably do different seminars and things also, but, but like a client engage. I’m imagining kind of like a checkup to begin with where you’re like, just learning a lot and then you give them a report card of sorts.

[00:39:38] Like, Ooh, you’re gonna need a lot of work here. Uh, this is the engagement we would propose and it’s, you know, once a month or once quarterly kind of engagements and coachings along with, you know, some of the key employee development and stuff. Is that a part of that? No, not quite.

[00:39:53] Elizabeth Ledoux: Yeah. It’s not quite, but, um, so what I’ve found is that, so we do kind of an interview process and it’s no charge to do that.

[00:40:01] Um, just to get to know each other mm-hmm because I want to make sure that, and you know, we wanna make sure that it’s a great fit. Yeah. And that you’re in the right place and that we could be helpful. Yeah. Cause sometimes there’s work to be done before you’re ready to do the work. And then we have a, uh, we have a packet that we can give you.

[00:40:21] Says, you know, these are some things that you might wanna focus on. Yeah. And we could kind of,

[00:40:25] Curt Bear: if you get your G E D with this kind of stuff, we’ll come back and

[00:40:28] talk,

[00:40:29] Elizabeth Ledoux: then you’ll be ready and we can do some coaching at that level if, you know, if you’re interested. So we can help with that strategy side to build, grow, develop, and do that kind of thing.

[00:40:38] Um, and then with the transition work, um, that everything we do is basically flat rated. Hmm. So it’s a project and so we’re project focused. Okay. And I like that because, uh, we have milestones, we’ve got deliverables and then people know what they’re buying and they know what they’re gonna get. Yeah. Yeah.

[00:40:58] Yeah. And it’s not, I will tell you that the documents that somebody receives, those are nice. Right. Um, really the value in any coaching worker, any consulting work is your process in going through it. Yeah. It’s what you learn and how you shift and think yeah. When you get done, because then you’re on your way.

[00:41:16] It’s like

[00:41:17] Curt Bear: join, uh, you know, joining a gym, but with also getting a personal trainer. There’s a lot of work to do. We have a lot of opportunity to get you stronger, skinnier, faster, whatever. Um, you’re gonna do a lot of the work and here’s my part. Exactly. So, uh, well, that’s, that’s really interesting. Um, I guess, talk to me about other stages or is there something else?

[00:41:39] Oh,

[00:41:39] Elizabeth Ledoux: I have one, well, I have one thing that I wanna make sure. And it was in a conversation that I had a few days ago. Um, we actually help you implement the whole thing. So when, so in that, you know, once we finish the roadmap and we know what we’re, where we’re going, um, then we start working on things like governance and relationships and communication and, um, letting go and engaging cause yeah, the successor coming in and then the person transitioning, the person transitioning is used to leading the successor used to following.

[00:42:16] Right. And what you’re trying to do is get those to flip. Where the successor leads and right. The owner, the who’s leaving starts to follow follows,

[00:42:26] Curt Bear: but also cheerleads

[00:42:27] Elizabeth Ledoux: and yep. And their number one job becomes to help others be successful without them. Yeah. Which is a really interesting job to have.

[00:42:35] Right. That is really interesting job to have. Yeah.

[00:42:38] Curt Bear: A parent is kind of the most like that, that I can think of. Mm-hmm you’re out ready to go onto the nest now, you know,

[00:42:43] Elizabeth Ledoux: go on. Yeah. Yeah. And it’s kind of the same. So anyway, I just, some of the clients that we have have been with us for 6, 7, 8, 9 years. Oh yeah.

[00:42:52] And yeah, we help their second generations learn and grow. And, and then, so

[00:42:57] Curt Bear: even after that transition has passed, they may retain you on a monthly or quarterly basis to do project work within that. And, and to talk about how much work you need.

[00:43:07] Elizabeth Ledoux: Yep. Keep people, it takes years to transition. Yeah. Yeah. It takes years to make sure that yep.

[00:43:14] Well, and the

[00:43:14] Curt Bear: earlier you start, the more options you have. Exactly. So. I guess, talk to me about some of your other pursuits as well. Cause you’re a, you’re a tiger 21 chair, right? Uh, do you wanna talk about that? Is that something you’re at Liberty to even

[00:43:29] Elizabeth Ledoux: talk about? Yeah, I can tell a little bit about, so over my career, I am a, I am a connector.

[00:43:35] Okay. And I also love bringing people together that don’t know each other. Oh, I, I have the same hobby. it’s a great, great hobby. Um, so I, I enjoy traditions, which is why, you know, maybe I value this work comes from my heart, truly the work that I do. Um, so I am a tiger 21 chair, and that’s a basically it’s individuals who.

[00:44:00] Been in a successful business, they’ve probably had a liquidity of event of some sort and they,

[00:44:06] Curt Bear: with more zeros than my own

[00:44:07] Elizabeth Ledoux: liquidity with more zeros. Yes. Yeah. Cause the minimum is, um, 10 million in investible assets. Wow. So, and they can be invested, but they, they have, you know, had a good liquidity event.

[00:44:18] Right. And yeah, and we, um, it’s just a pure learning group and it’s a lot

[00:44:23] Curt Bear: like what lo think tank does just much wealthier people do

[00:44:27] Elizabeth Ledoux: yes. And, and people that are, um, have they’re looking for that next adventure. And we talk about, um, philanthropy and we talk about all different kinds of things and they’re very engaged in the communities and yeah.

[00:44:40] All of that. So it’s really a, especially in Colorado, I think it’s a, an amazing group of people.

[00:44:46] Curt Bear: That’s awesome. I was, I was gonna say like, it feels to me from the outside, looking in that it’s a very heart forward kind of an organization, even though these are big wealthy individuals. They, they wanna do good with what they’ve been blessed with.

[00:44:58] Yep. Yep.

[00:44:59] Elizabeth Ledoux: And very grateful. Yeah.

[00:45:00] Curt Bear: Yeah. How, how does one get into something like that? How did I do that? Yeah. Did somebody from tiger? Like recruit you like, Hey, you’d be a, I

[00:45:07] Elizabeth Ledoux: ended chair. Yeah. I ended up getting recruited, but I also have, um, I, I was a facilitator of groups. Um, for 14 years I did the woman president’s organization.

[00:45:19] Okay. Yep. And I chaired the Denver group. Oh, wow. Okay. Um, yeah, I took it over when it was a few years old and um, then managed it and grew it for 14 years. So I had that group. And so the, the WPO is women owners. Yeah. Entrepreneurs who are what they would call tier two. Yeah. Yeah. Women entrepreneurs, which means they’re, um, a couple million or more in annual revenues.

[00:45:44] Yeah. Yeah. And when I started, there were, they were hard to find. And now they’re much more prevalent. So then I went up and founded Calgary, of course. Okay, sure. Right. Cuz I was up there anyway. Good skiing up there. Yeah. Good skiing up there. And so I went up and did that and then I turned that over. To another lady and she still is chairing that.

[00:46:04] Awesome. And then, um, helped another chair start the second Denver group in about two and a half years ago. Okay, great. I gave that my group to her. So she’s now managing outta Denver too. And there also is one in Northern Colorado. Oh, there is that. I helped to get off the ground as well. That’s good. Yeah.

[00:46:21] So if anybody wants to know more about that yeah. They can go to look up the women president’s organization. It’s an amazing group of people also. Yeah, yeah, yeah. And that peer learning, um, is invaluable.

[00:46:34] Curt Bear: And what is that a standalone organization? WPO? Um, that’s separate from anything Vista or Renaissance forum or young presidents or

[00:46:42] Elizabeth Ledoux: whatever.

[00:46:43] Yeah, it is, it was founded, um, Marsha Firestone. Okay. Because the lady that founded it and she, uh, Headquartered in New York. Oh, wow. Okay. Um, been around for a long, long time and it’s international worldwide. Okay. So I just did a podcast or a webinar actually, um, seminar for 30 women owners in South Africa.

[00:47:05] Oh, is that right? Yeah. Oh, that’s great. Yeah. It was 30 women owners in South Africa. And on, you know, the concepts of transition transitioning. Well, yeah.

[00:47:13] Curt Bear: Yeah. One of our act act, uh, active members today, uh, is a former member of WPO in Denver. Nice. She liked the, uh, shorter commute and the different price point as well.

[00:47:22] You bet, you bet. But I’m very, frankly, everybody, whether it’s tiger 21 or WPO or low code, like I’m a big fan of peer advisory and there’s way too many owners slugging it out, trying to make the same problems, go away with the same kind of decisions that they’ve been doing. And just to get these kind of peer learning things together.

[00:47:46] I just think there’s a lot of. Opportunity for way, way, way more.

[00:47:50] Elizabeth Ledoux: It’s it’s incredible being a chair and being in the position, cuz now I’m close to 17, 18 years that I’ve been doing, you know, facilitating groups like this. Yeah. And what I’ve seen, um, in just how quickly people can take in information and do things differently instead of, you know, pounding it out.

[00:48:10] Um, yeah. And the number one way that adults learn is from each other. Totally. And it’s that and, but you have to have trust and those kinds of things. So the repetitiveness of any organization like that is so

[00:48:22] Curt Bear: valuable well and, and getting through those hard times, mm-hmm , you know, it’s, it’s a lot harder to make the decision to let a long time employee go to save, to be a steward of the company in a declining revenue environment.

[00:48:35] If you’ve got other peers saying, Hey Elizabeth, it’s time. Yeah. You know, I know. They’re a great team, but you gotta cut your expenses by 50,000 a

[00:48:43] Elizabeth Ledoux: month. Yeah. And you gotta figure out how to do it quick. Yeah,

[00:48:47] Curt Bear: yeah, exactly. Times of wasting

[00:48:49] Elizabeth Ledoux: or even, yeah. Those ideas and, you know, support and up to, and including gosh, um, in our WPO, there was a lady that had to, she found out that she had cancer and she needed to be out for about three months to do, you know, surgery and chemo and everything else.

[00:49:07] And the members stepped in and they took turns and went in and they managed her company for her and they, they helped out her team. So that, and when she got back, she

[00:49:16] Curt Bear: came back to a stronger company than she had before probably cuz of those different perspectives and having to turn over stones that hadn’t been looked under maybe and stuff.

[00:49:23] Yeah.

[00:49:24] Elizabeth Ledoux: Yeah. And so yeah, the community is, oh, I’m getting community is a big deal.

[00:49:27] Curt Bear: Emotional. It seems like you are as well. we’ve got a tissue over here if we need it, but um, well, that’s great. And, and I think we share a passion for that kind of thing and, and uh, so, um, I guess if you wanted to share some like best practices of facilitation, of both learn from WPO and, and tiger, is there, you know, do you have like a little roadmap of the top three things or five things that a facilitator really has to do?

[00:49:53] Well,

[00:49:54] Elizabeth Ledoux: yeah, so first, um, I think selecting and helping the group come together, um, helping the group to have some, um, common values and common ground mm-hmm because one, one member who doesn’t fit yeah. Really makes changes the dynamic

[00:50:14] Curt Bear: one bad apple kind of spoils

[00:50:16] Elizabeth Ledoux: the barrel or of the group. Yeah. And, and, um, it’s the chair’s job to help to make that, uh, happen all the time.

[00:50:23] Yeah. So including have the card conversation. So that’s one thing. Um, second, the members help them to give and receive. So, you know, goes both ways and in a good peer learning organization, you have, every single person is learning. Even if you’re working on somebody else’s issue totally. Right. If you structure it properly.

[00:50:49] So it’s not about them. It’s about every single person participating. That’s how you get that. Um, I love the diversity of that. And then, um, uh, I just blanked out my last one is that the, the facilitator, if you can create a safe, SPL, a safe place for any conversation to happen. Hmm. Because it’s sort of a sacred room.

[00:51:13] Yeah. Where anything can be discussed, it’s confidential and, um, no one’s judged. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. So it’s a safe place to come and just kind of bear your soul and go, wow. My life is falling

[00:51:26] Curt Bear: apart. I love, uh, I like to say, uh, two parts board meeting, one part support group. Sometimes there you go. And you know, you can process those hard questions here also.

[00:51:37] I don’t know if I share or motto. I bet not, but it’s, uh, ask of your needs and share of your abundance. Oh, nice. Yeah. And, and it goes right to that. Give and receive. Everybody’s gotta give, everybody’s gotta receive, you know, and you don’t have all the answers, otherwise you wouldn’t be here, I guess.

[00:51:51] Elizabeth Ledoux: That’s true.

[00:51:51] And, and yeah, and, and to that point, your life, you know, you’re sharing the things that are falling apart, but you’re also sharing like, oh my gosh, I just got an offer for 20 or 30 million and they never thought it’d be worth five. So, you know, what

[00:52:06] Curt Bear: do I do? Well, and even being encouraged, you know, cuz most of us have an imagination of what our business is gonna look like.

[00:52:12] And we’re still far away from that thing. That’s that pull that keeps you pulling toward it. Um, but have fellow members that say, Hey, look back and look at what you’ve done in the last three years. You know, you’re twice as big and you’ve got a much stronger team than you did before. And so give yourself credit because you didn’t see Bob leaving, uh, and that’s gonna have a hard impact on your company, but people leave, you know, stuff happens.

[00:52:36] So, and

[00:52:37] Elizabeth Ledoux: celebrate because we, we so forget to celebrate, celebrate totally as owners and as, as even leaders, you just keep on plowing. Yeah. And yeah, take a moment. Yeah. And

[00:52:47] Curt Bear: even, even just that positive peer pressure to say, Hey, you guys just passed five years at your new, new location or this or that. Did you celebrate that with your team yet?

[00:52:55] Because I don’t think I heard anything about it if you did, you know? Yeah. So, uh, so, well talk to me, um, I guess other like business principles or, or life journey stuff, that’s really highlights that we might have breezed by. Hmm.

[00:53:12] Elizabeth Ledoux: That’s a big open question.

[00:53:13] Curt Bear: It sure is. Yeah. I’m going well, we’re gonna jump into our faith family politics segment here before too long.

[00:53:18] And so that’s where

[00:53:18] Elizabeth Ledoux: I would, that’s probably where I would go is, um, uh, Yeah, one, I think just, I think a practice of gratefulness is again, important. Um, business owners tend to tackle problems, tackle issues sometimes, you know, they’re, they thrive on that. Yeah. Tackling that and fixing it and, and that, and that’s part of their cycle, right.

[00:53:43] Is to do that. But I think, um, the, just a practice of gratefulness is important because there, there are so many good things that are going on right now. Yeah. Yeah. And in life. Yep.

[00:53:55] Curt Bear: Awesome. I love that. I think that’s, uh, I, I kept a gratitude journal and I’m still supposed to be writing it it every Monday and Friday morning, but I’ve been slacking for like three weeks now who know?

[00:54:04] Yeah. but it’s still a lot of gratitude I’ve been expressing, uh, over this time. Yeah. Well, thank you for that. Um, let’s jump in, uh, faith, family politics. What, uh, what do you have the most to say about, and, uh, and say as much, or as little as you care to.

[00:54:20] Elizabeth Ledoux: Yeah. So, um, I think in faith. So I, I definitely have a lot of faith, um, in my world and in my life.

[00:54:30] And one of the things that I’ve found is that when I take the time to slow down and actually pay attention and listen to the universe, which skiing helps me to do that. Yeah. Right. Running helps me to do that. Just getting out a little bit out of my element. Um, then I can see the direction. And so I think paying attention and, uh, and doing that.

[00:54:55] So faith is important. And in order to do that, you do need to be grounded. So the kind of that rat race, where we’re getting up and plowing through and getting up and plowing through again, and we stay on that, you know, that treadmill. Yeah. Um, we actually don’t have time to think. Business owners. It was one thing that I learned from my PhD business partner is, um, even there’s a reason why kids go on recess right there is.

[00:55:27] And he used to tell me that he’d say, you know, there’s a reason why kids go on recess and I would be running along, you know, just doing my thing and go, and we were gonna have lunch and he goes, you know, we’re gonna take five minutes and go one, one loop around the park. Yeah. Right next. So we go one loop around the park and I would come back refreshed and ready.

[00:55:44] Yeah. And ready

[00:55:45] Curt Bear: to go. So, and sometimes with an idea that solve that tricky puzzle you were working on before.

[00:55:49] Elizabeth Ledoux: Yes. Yeah. So being grounded means that you have time to think and that you have time to use your thinking brain and not your reactive brain. Mm-hmm and we’re so used to being, you know, I think right now on the treadmill.

[00:56:02] Yeah. All the time. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. So that would be my, my faith is take time to stop and listen to the universe because it tells you yeah. Where to go.

[00:56:11] Curt Bear: I’ve I’ve shared that, uh, whether you think it’s, you know, God’s plan for you or the universe sending you signals or being in the flow state, it’s all the same thing.

[00:56:20] And if you just open yourself up to it and take time to listen, uh, you might hear just hear

[00:56:25] Elizabeth Ledoux: something. Yeah. And I, I truly believe it’s, I truly believe it’s God’s plan. I believe that we are every single one of us is different. We all have our, um, Natural wiring that. Um, and it’s one of the tools that I own and use, you asked me if I use a profiling tool.

[00:56:42] Okay. Yeah. That’s what I use. And, um, truly, I just, I think that it is God’s plan. Some people prefer the universe and I actually believe there’s both. Hmm. I think, yeah. Yeah. I think there’s energy, but that’s part of being a petroleum engineer there’s and we know because of cellular phones and everything else, there’s a lot of energy that you can’t see that is around us.

[00:57:04] Curt Bear: Totally. You know, not just, uh, there’s all, there’s all the people’s creative energies and thoughts and fears and things like that. And then not to mention all the, just cell phone signals and power lines and this and that is just a, a field around us all the time. That’s

[00:57:18] Elizabeth Ledoux: right. Yeah. So that’s faith, um, family.

[00:57:22] Oh, gosh, family first. Um, I’ll just tell this story. My brother, my dad, my mother, we used to go skiing and. They sat us down once and they said, they said, you don’t know it yet, but you two are best friends and you will be for your entire lives. That’s awesome. Um, because you can always count on each other and this is your brother or sister?

[00:57:43] My brother. Okay. Only one brother. Do you wanna name him? Yeah, Eric, Eric Blake. And he’s a CPA down in Denver. All right. Um, yeah. Um, and your best friend still? We are best friends and it’s really interesting, but you know, we were told that from when we were young and we were taught great values and we were taught how to, how to navigate, not getting along, because we know that we don’t get along all the time.

[00:58:08] Right. But we know that when, you know, foundationally, if I need him or he needs me that we’re best friends. Yeah. Yeah. And so I think of family first and I think of, um, I go to transitions, I’m working with two brothers. Okay. Um, out of, yeah, they’re on the west coast right now. and, um, they’re coming together to be partners and their family put them together to be partners.

[00:58:31] Interesting. And, and, uh, they didn’t trust each other. Hmm. So I said, well, we might wanna pause this transition for a moment and let’s figure out if these two want to be partners and how they wanna be partners. And if they trust each other and all of that. And, um, you know, they’re coming back together because family glues you together.

[00:58:51] Yeah. Yeah. You don’t get to choose your family. But, um, anyway, family, I would just say great values start early with your kids. And, um, and remember that there’s a lot of good in family and you have two boys, is that. I have two boys and a stepdaughter. Okay. Yeah.

[00:59:09] Curt Bear: And I like to do, even though they’re probably nearing adulthood or, or they’re in their

[00:59:13] Elizabeth Ledoux: thirties married.

[00:59:14] Yeah. Yep. You got grandkids and, and stuff too. I have one grand granddaughter and one on the way.

[00:59:19] Curt Bear: So, uh, let’s talk about the, the kids first of the boys, uh, and the, and the stepchild stepdaughter, uh, I’d like to do one word description for the kids as a collective unit. No one for

[00:59:30] Elizabeth Ledoux: each. Oh man. Um,

[00:59:34] Curt Bear: maybe two words, if you wanna stretch.

[00:59:36] It is too hard. Two words I had amazing

[00:59:39] Elizabeth Ledoux: earlier with. Yeah. They, they, well, I would do as a collective unit, um, independent and amazing. They’re, they’re amazing people in their own world, but one of ’em I would say is a, a very, um, he’s an analyst in his work and he’s just a very kind person. Um, my other one is he’s a Navy pilot and he’s like, Flying F 18 doing amazing things for our country.

[01:00:09] That’s like harder

[01:00:10] Curt Bear: than getting into the school of minds harder

[01:00:12] Elizabeth Ledoux: than getting into the school of minds. Yeah. So he’s giving yeah. Of his time and, um, helping us all. So he is, um, servant hearted sounds like, yeah. Yeah. So one’s more mechanical, right? One’s more analyst, one’s more mechanical. And then, um, the third one would be truly like an artist, a free spirit artist.

[01:00:30] I love that. She’s incredible

[01:00:31] Curt Bear: as well. Those are some of my favorite people to be around because they see things differently than I do. Yeah. And you’ve got a little of that in you as well that you shared, uh, as well as the systems kind of thinking. So you’re definitely a strange breed a little bit, not too many people wired like you, I bet people say all the time.

[01:00:46] That is true. so, uh, and, and would you like to. Um, you you’re married now as well. I am. And would you like to brag on your hubby a little bit or talk about the love story

[01:00:58] Elizabeth Ledoux: there? Yeah, that was gonna be part of my crazy

[01:01:01] Curt Bear: experience, actually. Okay. Well we can, we, we can wait for that

[01:01:04] Elizabeth Ledoux: if you’d like to. Yeah, but I can, I can brag on, on him a little bit.

[01:01:07] Um, he is a helicopter pilot. He used to work for the city of San Diego’s fire department for fire rescue. Okay. And currently he is a, he’s a firefighter. For a company called Colson aviation. Okay. And he, he puts out fires and saves people’s homes with the helicopter houses. Yeah. He’s the guy that you see on the TV.

[01:01:29] Yeah. Yeah. That’s flying around and picking up water and dropping it and really helping the firefighters to get. Yeah. So he’s seems kind of

[01:01:36] Curt Bear: dangerous, like there’s updrafts and things like that. Trying to crash your helicopter. There

[01:01:40] Elizabeth Ledoux: can be, it there’s a whole over the years I’ve been with him for a little over 15 years.

[01:01:46] Okay. And yeah, I’ve learned a lot about how fire is fought. Yeah, sure. And it can be dangerous. Absolutely. But it is, um, yeah, he loves it.

[01:01:55] Curt Bear: That sounds pretty exciting, actually. Uh, not that I’m gonna sign right up. It’s very interesting. Yeah. So I what’s his name?

[01:02:02] Elizabeth Ledoux: His name is Lyle Lyle. Yep. Lyle Ledu

[01:02:05] Curt Bear: Lyle helicopter pilot.

[01:02:06] So no relation to Chris Ledou I guess. No,

[01:02:09] Elizabeth Ledoux: unfortunately do you have some of

[01:02:11] Curt Bear: his albums at least. Oh, good. Good. So, so, uh, faith, family. And, and what would you care to say about politics?

[01:02:19] Elizabeth Ledoux: Oh gosh. Politics politics are the, what I have to say about politics is they truly are, um, I think kind of a wild ride right now.

[01:02:28] And I think that they’re important to our community, to our country. Okay. We live in one of the most amazing countries in the world. And so appreciating our politics is important, but also, um, trying to figure out how to come together. Yeah. I think. Something that we need to work on. Not only just in our politics, but as a country.

[01:02:51] Yeah. Yeah. I think that there’s a lot of division. And, um, when, when I wrote the book people first, yeah. Um, there’s a lot of judgment going on, I think right now in our world. And some of the, I heard a

[01:03:08] Curt Bear: poll about that. Like the, the Democrats literally think that Republicans would ruin the world if they took charge and vice versa.

[01:03:15] Yes. Within minutes or months, you know, they were given their full

[01:03:18] Elizabeth Ledoux: sway. Yeah. And, and that’s all about power and, um, you know, power, money, greed, whatever. But, um, when I do my work, it’s interesting. One of the, there are three rules of engagement and one of them is best of intent. Mm. And then the second one’s honest, direct, not accusatory.

[01:03:40] And the third one is be playful. And so best of intent and we, we do this, I mean, there are politics inside of businesses, too. Sure. Um, you know, who’s gonna get to be CEO and who gets this and, but if you assume best of intent, truly just as a foundation in your family, um, with any friend, even if they hurt you yeah.

[01:04:04] You know, hurt your feelings. Um, It assume best of intent. And it’s like, oh, it makes you curious, like, whoa. Yeah. Why, why did you say that to me? You know, that really hurt my feelings. Right. You know, and, and there’s a difference between, you know, truly being physically hurt and sure. Of course, but yeah, that, that best of intent, um, that’s critical.

[01:04:27] Yeah. So I don’t think that we’re using best of intent in our politics. No. Or some of the other things that we’re doing as a

[01:04:34] Curt Bear: community. One of the definitions for politics that I’ve heard is that the system that’s been developed so that we don’t actually hack each other to bits with swords or shoot each other with guns.

[01:04:43] Elizabeth Ledoux: Yeah, definitely.

[01:04:45] Curt Bear: And, and that playful, you know, it, it, there used to be a pretty good, uh, you know, you would do speeches and things and actually try to sway the other guys. But it, to me, it seems like both parties, the party exhibits too much control over the. Like, I mean, there’s the pariahs of our nation right now are mansion and Kristen, whatever her name is because they’ve got, you know, a lot of power in this, in the democratic caucus to shape this legislation.

[01:05:13] And everyone’s like, you get along with the, get along with the ride, everybody, you know, it’s pretty interesting. There’s a lot of pressure on those, uh, those books and, and, and maybe that’s just them looking for some spotlight. Mm. You know, probably not. I don’t

[01:05:27] Elizabeth Ledoux: think so. Don’t yeah, no, I, I would, you know, I, if I live, if I live what I say, if I assume best of intent, then I would hope that they actually, and I would hope our politicians would have best of intent for the people.

[01:05:41] Yeah. Right. And

[01:05:42] Curt Bear: not put not for me or for my

[01:05:44] Elizabeth Ledoux: district. No. But for the, for the people and what they believe would be the best thing for you would, or

[01:05:49] Curt Bear: would, would you believe Hmm. You said, I would hope that our politicians do, would, do you believe that they do?

[01:05:56] Elizabeth Ledoux: Um, I actually don’t know. Yeah. Cause I, I, you know, if I wanted to.

[01:06:01] I want to believe that yeah. That sometimes I listen to the news or listen to some of the conversations and I, um, and especially if our news takes it out of context. I don’t know. Right. Right. So, because I don’t the same story, I believe. I don’t trust our news. Totally.

[01:06:18] Curt Bear: A moment terrible. Gag me with a spoon news, right?

[01:06:21] Yeah.

[01:06:22] Elizabeth Ledoux: Yeah. Fair enough. Well, yeah, you had, no, I was gonna say, I used to, I used to enjoy going to Canada. I haven’t been up there for well, since pre COVID, but I used to enjoy going to Canada because their news is so different and their news, I would learn more about the United States and what we were doing and about the world up there.

[01:06:43] Right, right. Than I would hear. Oh, I

[01:06:44] Curt Bear: totally click BBC more regularly when I wanna learn actually what’s going on right here. Yeah. Yeah. Uh, cuz as otherwise there’s definitely a spin mm-hmm you know? And so otherwise you have to figure the spin into the news story to try to figure out what actually probably happened.

[01:06:58] Right. Or take a lot of sources in, which is probably what I do too much. Lot

[01:07:03] Elizabeth Ledoux: of different sources. Yeah. Yeah. Form your own opinion. Right.

[01:07:05] Curt Bear: Get somewhere in the middle there. Yeah. Anyway. Yeah. Well, thanks for sharing that. And then, um, your local experience, uh, what’s that crazy experience of your lifetime that you’d like to tell the story of?

[01:07:15] Elizabeth Ledoux: So my crazy experience of my lifetime, uh, I was a single mom. Mm-hmm right. Two kids in school and trying to figure out how to put, you know, put the money together and keep first and keep family first and build up my company and do some different things that I needed to do. Not independently wealthy yet.

[01:07:35] No, unfortunately not. And I had this, um, uh, ski instructor that I’d skied with for a while. Good friend. And he knew that I had always wanted to go, he skiing and he skiing’s expensive. And so he called me up and he. We’re going, hell skiing, you’re going. And I said, no, no, no, no, no. And this was like April and I said, no, no, no, no, I can’t go.

[01:08:00] There’s no possible way. You know, it’d be totally irresponsible for me to do this. It’d be awful then. But through the summer, he, he didn’t let me leave me alone. He, and so then he said he would train me for free. Okay. I had to go up to winter park and ski and he would get me into shape and he would do that at no charge and just as a friend.

[01:08:20] And so anyway, I ended up going, he skiing that next winter. Okay. And, um, so this is the love story. So I go up feel like I shouldn’t have been there in the first place. Right. Big trip. Um,

[01:08:31] Curt Bear: everybody else that goes, he skiing has like corporations that they own and they don’t have two kids at home trying to figure out.

[01:08:38] Nope.

[01:08:39] Elizabeth Ledoux: It’s. Yeah. And, but I did go on the shoulder season, so it was a little cheaper. Right. But I end up getting off of the bus and, um, the helicopter, um, they were picking up the passengers and so. The pilot, you know, bangs on the side of the door and he yells to this guy, Tom and says, put the girl in the red coat in the front seat.

[01:08:57] And that was me. And, uh, he’s now my sweet husband. Oh, that’s awesome. Yeah. So that was my wild experience. Um, is one meeting him, but two just going hell skiing, because yeah. Tell us about that. It was incredible. The place. So Canadian mountain holidays, their ski area is about the size of Switzerland. Oh gosh.

[01:09:17] May have got 13 lodges. And so I was in one of the lodges. It’s you fly in and you’re there for a week and there’s no, you have to be that’s you’re wanna leave. You’re flying out. That’s the only way out. But, um, yeah, so being dropped off on top of this amazing mountain, as far as you can see are just white caps, blue sky, and there’s no noise and there are.

[01:09:43] There’s no noise there. It’s silent. Yep. And you can’t see any power lines. There’s nothing. And two things. One, I realized, um, how small I am on this earth. Yeah. Right. And I try so hard to make a difference for people and to do great things. But you know, in the scheme of life, yes. Yeah. If the helicopter wouldn’t have come and picked this back up, we probably wouldn’t have made it.

[01:10:07] Right. Because I didn’t know how to survive in the middle of yeah. Yeah. You the best for

[01:10:11] Curt Bear: skiing? Not for outdoor survival. No,

[01:10:14] Elizabeth Ledoux: no. And then, and then, um, yeah, just that, um, how amazing it is to be on this earth and how, um, incredible our world is. Yeah. Right. Yeah. And what a big difference, like yeah. God’s a part of my life.

[01:10:26] So

[01:10:27] Curt Bear: does he put you up front because he thought you were.

[01:10:31] Elizabeth Ledoux: He was like, put the girl in the red coat in the front seat and he just, yeah, but he’s yeah, he was, he’s a really wonderful person.

[01:10:38] Curt Bear: And was it just kind of love from there? Almost like exchange digits went out that next Thursday night and then Friday night and then Saturday night.

[01:10:45] No,

[01:10:46] Elizabeth Ledoux: well, we, he, but he’s at hell or there. He was the, he was the pilot right. All week. And so he would drop us off and pick us up and drop us off and then oh, right. And then everybody has dinner together and it’s a, you know, just big tables. And so, and then there’s the bar and then we would play games. And so we did that.

[01:11:04] And then when I left, um, he asked me if he could call me. And so he did, and then he asked me if he could come visit me. Right. And I said in Colorado, And I said, sure. Yeah, yeah, Nope. And so, but I did tell him, I was like, you know, I just skied with you for a week and I kind of don’t know you. So why don’t you call me for a while?

[01:11:25] Let’s get to know each other before you come to Colorado. I love it. Yeah. But it worked out great. That’s awesome.

[01:11:32] Curt Bear: So, uh, I guess, unless there’s anything else you feel compelled to share, we can, uh, just let people know how to find the amazing Elizabeth Ledoux and or transition strategists. Sure.

[01:11:44] Elizabeth Ledoux: No. Well, one thing I’d like to share is just a thank you.

[01:11:47] Oh, this has been no, I’ve really enjoyed this and I really appreciate being invited to come here. And if anybody’s interested in knowing more about the transition strategist, we have our website it’s um, it’s just, uh, transition and

[01:12:04] Curt Bear: so strategist NOSO strategist. Okay. Strategist that’s I thought so.

[01:12:08] Okay. Yeah.

[01:12:08] Elizabeth Ledoux: Plural. Transition and then, um, we’ve got all different kinds of things. So, so you can connect with us there’s yeah. There’s seven principles. Yeah. You can buy books on Amazon and we do, we have a kind of a survey. If you wanna have a conversation with us, I love sharing ideas and learning about people.

[01:12:36] And so, and I don’t think that there’s any way to work with anybody if you don’t get to know ’em a little bit. Yeah. Yeah. So, yeah, I would encourage, if you’re interested to go on the website and set up a time to talk with us and see. Kind of where you are in your journey and yeah. Um, yeah, we do have that package that we give to people if you’re not quite ready.

[01:12:58] Yeah. But it gives you an idea of, you know, some things to do to get

[01:13:01] Curt Bear: ready. Yeah. So like Loco is about a half million dollar business next year. I think maybe a little bigger. Yeah. You know, we’re not, and, and I’m trying to craft a role where I don’t have to be the everything guy, but I can just run around and do podcasts with amazing people like yourself.

[01:13:15] Uh, is it too soon for me to engage? Potentially? No, wouldn’t be much to work on right away, but we could at least have the

[01:13:21] Elizabeth Ledoux: framework. Absolutely. And, and the first thing to do is to, like I said, do the compass right. And figure that out. And that’s relatively straightforward. And the timelines that we build are 10 year timelines.

[01:13:33] Right. They can be, I love it or longer because it’s the, you know, what am I gonna do today? Because every decision that you make today, Makes a difference in the future. Yeah. Yeah.

[01:13:42] Curt Bear: Fair enough. I know I can find somebody that’s better at my job than me.

[01:13:47] Elizabeth Ledoux: I don’t know. We hope that we’re all replaceable at some point in time.

[01:13:51] Curt Bear: Fair enough. Yeah. Well, this has been a joy and, uh, I’ve, you know, happy to share about you. And I hope that we can find other ways where, where we can sprinkle your knowledge and, and experience into the local sphere here with the local think tank. Thank

[01:14:03] Elizabeth Ledoux: you. Cut speed. Thank you so much.

[01:14:13] Ad: Thanks for listening to this episode of the logo experience podcast. If you enjoyed this program, share with your favorite people and please leave us a review on your favorite listening platform. Subscribe to never miss the latest interview and check out the logo to learn more and find our library of episodes until next time stay local.

The Business Transition Roadmap with Elizabeth Ledoux

How do communities thrive? When businesses experience healthy growth and transition. Join CEO of The Transition Strategists, Elizabeth Ledoux as she and her guests identify what makes a successful business transition roadmap. If you know you want to transition or exit your business “one day”, today is the right day to start planning. This show will give you the roadmap.

If you’ve enjoyed this podcast, you can check out other episodes here: Podcasts – The Transition Strategists
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