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Town Haul Podcast / Episode 1

Town Haul Podcast


Welcome to the Town Haul Podcast


Rubicon’s first and only podcast where we share advice for techies, earth lovers and for penny pinchers!



Xero to 100 Real Quick

Introduction to the Town Haul Rubicon Podcast

[0:00:05.5] AK: Hey, guys! My name is Amy Koonin and I’m your host for The Town Haul, Rubicon’s first and only podcast where we share advice for techies, for earth lovers and for penny pinchers. As much as I love the sound of my own voice, this broadcast is going to rely heavily on guests where subject matter experts on everything, ranging from how to get your small business up and running, interviews with some of the brains behind your favorite apps and even how to remove garbage from outer space.

You never know who’s going to popup and join me next in the studio, so make sure to subscribe to The Town Haul on iTunes to get our episodes downloaded directly. If your boss is making you work through lunch or your commute, it’s just too short and you miss something awesome, don’t worry, we’ve got your back. You can check out our blog for recaps, reviews and all things Town Haul.

Ryan Watson from Xero

[0:00:56.5] AK: All right everyone. Our guest today is Ryan Watson from Xero, and I’ll let Ryan explain a little bit more about Xero and what exactly it is that he does, but we’re super lucky to have Ryan joining us via Skype all the way from the tropical island of Dayton, Ohio. Is that right?

[0:01:16.2] RW: Pretty close. Northern Cincinnati. Yup!

[0:01:18.7] AK: Your phone came up as Dayton, so we’re going to go for Dayton for the sake of the joke.

[0:01:23.2] RW: Well, I’m from Dayton, Ohio. No, I’m originally from Dayton, Ohio.

[0:01:28.3] AK: Okay, so I’m no wrong, and the joke worked. The joke landed.

[0:01:31.4] RW: Yeah, totally win.

[0:01:33.0] AK: All right. Ryan, why don’t we start by giving our listeners kind of an introduction maybe a little bit about you and a little bit of explanation about your role as well as kind of a little bit about Xero too?

[0:01:44.9] RW: Yeah, totally. My name is Ryan Watson, right? I am a cofounder and a partner in, actually, Columbus, Ohio based accounting practice called Upsourced Accounting. We perform outsourced accounting and management advisory for small businesses and a couple of verticals one of which is B-to-B software startups, then another are sort of seven-figure digital agencies.

We’ve been using as a platform to provide those services a software called Xero for the past six years or seven years. In addition to renting this practice I’m also a brand ambassador for Xero which really just means I travel around throughout the Midwest talking to accounting firms and businesses about cloud and technology and accounting in general, and specifically for accounting firms how they can leverage technology to deliver more real-time advisory services for their small business clients

Xero is a small business accounting platform. It’s 100% cloud-based. It’s sort of a competitor to the incumbent in the U.S. is QuickBooks and QuickBooks Online, but Xero is sort of 100% cloud-based, born in a cloud alternative to QuickBook.

[0:02:51.3] AK: I think that there’s a lot of similarities between Xero and Rubicon. We’re both kind of disrupting old industries, like back in the days, bookkeeping was literal bookkeeping. Now, people are able to do this online and it’s a real modern spin no a lot of that stuff. On the Rubicon side, obviously, we’re trying to disrupt the waste industry, but a big part in our business is small businesses. I really wanted to bring you on today to kind of talk either as Ryan or as a small business owner and I’ll ask you a couple of questions and we can see a couple of different answers.

We have a lot of small business customers, as you know, are podcasts are also going to live on our market place, which is going to be a resource for a lot of our small business owners. We really just want to kind of make sure that we’re thought leaders and giving the best advice. Let’s start off really easy. What is the best advice that you could give for someone who’s about to start a small business?

Small Business Advice

[0:03:52.1] RW:Yeah, that’s a good question. It’s actually kind of a loaded sort of difficult to answer question, but honestly the best advice I think is probably start small. What I mean by that is I think a lot of folks have this idea that if they’re going to start a small business, presumably they have a fulltime job today, and so the only way to do it is to quit their fulltime job, go rent some brick and mortar space, spend six figures to do the build out and then go sort of jump all in.

Usually, the best answer is to not do that, instead is to ask yourself what is the cheapest, quickest, least risky way I can test or validate that this thing I want to do should exist in the world, that there are consumers that want to buy the thing that I want to sell.

Often, that looks like a web-based ecommerce experience. It frankly looks like having a lot of conversations with the digital consumers beforehand, and then it looks like, “Okay, how do I start this thing as a nights and weekends project? Do I start this thing sort of at a smaller scale to sort of de-risk my eventual investment into going sort of full force at this?

That’s, frankly, how we started our accounting firm. It was a nights and weekends project that we’d started. Sold one client in our first month, sold a couple of clients in our next month and it really took us six or seven months before he had sort of validated that our unique approach of selling or providing services for our clients was something that we could really build around and scale around and then made the investment to go fulltime. Starting in sort of small bite size increments and de-risking your eventual investment is probably the smartest way to do it.

[0:05:27.7] AK: Yeah, I think that’s kind of how they tell you to do. I guess in my experience is kind of like starting a diet. They tell to you like start with small changes. Don’t go all in, because you’re going to burnout.

[0:05:39.3] RW: That’s right. Yup!

[0:05:40.0] AK: Okay. Let’s stay in the small business lane a little bit. You started our small business now, we’re taking the small steps. Maybe we’ve registered for an LLC or have a cute name, kind of like our podcast; The Town Haul. We’re very proud of it.

[0:05:52.6] RW: Nice.

[0:05:52.8] AK: Thanks. Now let’s talk about some of the challenges that I’m going to face as a small business owner, and let’s talk specifically for Xero some of the finance challenge or the bookkeeping challenges. What’s the best way to find a mentor or an accountant bookkeeper to help me with my finances when I’m starting a small business? How do I even go about that process?

Small Business Mentor

[0:06:18.3] RW: Yeah, that’s a good question. I’ll start broad, which is just sort of how do I find resources that can help my small business. I think it’s important to realize that even though you’ve likely not been there and done that, you don’t have to do it all on your own, the idea of carrying all that burden alone is generally a mistake.

I think one of the big learning for us early on was surround ourselves with as many people who have solved challenges that we’re currently facing as possible and really lean on them. We allocated a large amount of our budget to just having coffees, just taking people out. The reality is people like to help other people, and so reaching out with a genuine and an honest ask for folks in your community who’ve kind of been there, done that is sort of a first step into kind of surrounding yourself with a group of eventual mentors.

As it relates to some of the more vertical specific needs, like legal, or let’s take accounting. I can surely speak to that. The one advice I would give to people looking for accountants is not necessarily to find a person that’s closest to them in geography, but rather the person who is most capable of helping them solve their unique business challenges and ultimately succeed. I think that is one of the big learnings with cloud technology, firms have sort of eliminated the geographic barrier and can service clients not just in their own hometowns, but throughout the country, frankly throughout the world.

Because geographic barriers are now less relevant, sort of vertical and niche segments are more relevant. For instance, our firm, we work with B-to-B venture backed or venture backable software startups, which is a very specific niche. However, if you’re one of those businesses, we like to think there’s not a better choice in the world regardless of where to live than to work with us. If you’re some other kind of business, we’re probably not the best choice, right?

Doing a little bit of search and reaching out to other sort of peers in your industry to find out who are the people that are the most knowledgeable about your specific business and not just general as to know how to file a tax return. Those are the best resources to turn to.

[0:08:25.0] AK: Absolutely. I’ve registered by business, I got a cute name, I am creating my mentors and reaching out and doing a lot of the research. My coworkers actually joke that I should have tattooed maybe on my forehead or on my back or something, because I say it all the time, your network is your net worth. I truly, truly believe that, that the more people that you can talk to, you can steal that. Just copyright it.

[0:08:52.5] RW: Good. I’ve already stolen it. I actually just [inaudible 0:08:54.7], but keep going.

[0:08:56.3] AK: The more people that you can talk to and the more advice that you can get, but you also don’t want too many cooks in the kitchen. You don’t want to be — You do kind of want to rely on something like Xero to kind of be your one stop shop, your be all end all in terms of all things bookkeeping.

Now, let’s talk a little bit about; I have my business, I got my mentors, I got my friends. Now, I need to make a big decision, and I guess for the sake of the podcast and for the sake of all of these, we’re going to say that I started a cookie business. It’s 2:08 and I’m starving. That’s all I have on my mind.

I’m starting a bakery and I have to make the choice between is this going to be a brick and mortar. Am I going to have a cute store in downtown Buckhead in Atlanta or maybe in Dayton or wherever, or am
I going to do an online small business, kind of like how Baked by Melissa or somebody’s large crispy treat businesses have really grown to scale and that way I’ll be able to kind of ship all over the world.

My question is let’s talk a little bit about some of the differences between financing and accounting and advice for brick and mortar and online businesses.

Financing and Accounting Advice for Businesses

[0:10:15.2] RW: Yeah. No, good question. Certainly, brick and mortar is better suited in some business just inherently than other kinds of businesses. That’s definitely true. There’s certainly a trend around ecommerce just generally, which is ultimately it’s easier and easier to buy things online, so certainly like low discretion, low consideration purchases are almost always going to start to happen online versus in-store.

The retail or the brick and mortar experience is sort of transitioning to one where just having one alone isn’t good enough. Ultimately, the brick and mortars need to live for the purpose of adding an experience or adding some sort of expertise. Something that you can’t otherwise get online, otherwise you’re going to make the purchase online.

As a small business owner thinking about building a cookie shop or a bakery or whatever, the question is; how do I create a unique experience that I wouldn’t otherwise be able to create from an ecommerce bakery, or how do I develop authentic human connections with my audience? From a financing accounting perspective, obviously, the ecommerce route is substantially more capital efficient, way easier to start, certainly easier to scale.

Again, bakeries are a little challenging. There are some elements of that kind of business that actually just lends itself better to the in-store kind of experience. If I step up a level for a second, generally, ecommerce is the best way to test again that an idea should live. If I’ve got this really unique cookie recipe and for whatever reason it’s differentiated or better than the other cookie bakers in the county, the best way for me to get out there and test that this really is a superior product that I can sell is something that probably isn’t brick and mortar right away.

Now, it doesn’t necessarily have to just be commerce, right? It could be an online presence with a wholesale local approach on selling through other restaurants or other vendors, but I don’t necessarily have the overhead of my own retail store and start to get a little back. A; you can sort of build some awareness. B; you can start to validate your business before incurring a five-year lease and the six-figures of build out to create that brick and mortar storefront and not even knowing yet if this thing is going to succeed. Generally, if you can, starting ecommerce or at least non-brick and mortar to begin is preferable, just from a flat-out capital efficient perspective.

[0:12:46.8] AK: I also think ecommerce is preferable, A; just because it’s 2017. It’s the world that we live in. It’s easier from a social media perspective as well and a marketing perspective, and there’s a lot of free options with that.

You head on something that I kind of wanted to dig a little bit deeper, and you used the word trends. You said a trend in ecommerce. Let’s talk about some — What are some of the trends for small businesses that you’ve seen this year? More importantly, this will — It’s October right now, it’s a launch in November, and let’s talk about some other trends that you are forecasting to see being really popular in small businesses and cloud accounting and all that for 2018 as well.

eCommerce Trends

[0:13:34.3] RW: Totally. A couple of trends that are happening now that are sort of tangible. One actually dovetails really well into what we were just talking about this whole like brick and mortar versus online decision point, let’s call it, is the user of crowd-funding, let’s say, as a means of product validation instead of just raising money.

[0:13:56.7] AK: I get so much money to the most ridiculous product that I never think are going to get —

[0:14:02.6] RW: That’s right. We work with a number of startups that have a physical product, and the number one way that they validate a product before they actually go to manufacture at scale is a kick-starter, right? What easier way with a modest amount of investment to build a compelling video and message around a design, you can test if this is the thing to sell or not.

That’s a really great way that we’re seeing folks use not just for what it was originally intended for, which [inaudible 0:14:30.9] money, but really more product validation and testing. That’s definitely one trend. I think there’s another trend around — Again, this is true specifically of ecommerce, right, as people have higher probability to buy online, but as more people are selling online, just being a cookie store for instance that sells online, that’s a pretty crowded space. We’re definitely seeing a narrowing of segments, where if you’re going to be successful online, having a very specific product offering or value proposition or niche customer that you’re going after is becoming more and more important.

[0:15:05.0] AK: I’m not just selling cookies online. Now, I’m selling cookies that are completely customizable from dough to toppings and is made in a sustainable facility, and it’s 2017, so it’s gluten-free, and I’m vegan and yadi-yadi-yada.

[0:15:22.1] RW: That’s exactly what I was going to say. Yeah, vegan, gluten-free, some amount of fruit-specific dietary requirement, protein cookies, that sort of like cross fit group that’s looking for — Anyway, the idea being specific dietary requirements, whatever that is. Really niching down your offerings is super important.

Then alongside that is, as you think about pricing strategy, a thing that we’re seeing that started with the software world, which is SaSS subscription revenue, moving from episodic one time sales to recurring revenue sales, we’re starting to see that circle into just traditional retail and CPG products. You’ve got your Dollar Shave Club’s of the world. Every sort of category is asking themselves, “How do I turn the episodic sale into the recurring sale?”

By doing that — Because I think one of the sort of trends that is also true is that it’s becoming more and more difficult to reach large audiences at scale. Sort of like the golden age of advertising where you could buy a TV spot and hypnotize people is becoming harder and harder to do, right? Interruptive advertising is becoming much less prominent? The way to reach customers today is building authentic connections with your consumers on social media, or using useful content.

You’re having to invest more in each individual customer, and so then the question is, “How do I convert that customer to a large lifetime value?” The way to do that is to lock them into some sort of subscription revenue pricing model. We’re seeing retailers and product companies do that with in pretty much every vertical of any kind.

Investing More in Each Customer

[0:17:01.6] AK: Now I’m creating like a dessert box that has my vegan protein cookies delivered to your door twice a month in a cute packaging with dry ice and I’m taking the hassle out of dessert for you. Okay.

[0:17:17.6] RW: Yup. That’s exactly right. Even if I’m a retailer and I sell through an Amazon or — Gosh! Even in a grocery store, you’re seeing things like subscribe and save on Amazon, or add to cart or add to ClickList. Kroger is a retailer of us in Southwest Ohio and their online ordering is called ClickList. Really, that’s quasi-subscription revenue, right? Once you sort of, on Amazon, click subscribe and save. Now, I’ve got a subscription of that product. Once I get into this online basket of that retailer, it’s likely that I’m going to stay in that basket. That’s even a sort of synthetic subscription. It’s just a total shift of pretty much every industry.

[0:17:57.0] AK: I mean my entire life completely changed the day that I figured out what Instacart was and figured out online ordering for Kroger, and I feel bad, because now I don’t ask how the — Paulette, the woman at my Kroger, how her grandkids are all the time, but I also can sit on my lazy but and order all my groceries. I know that these same amount of groceries, the same stuff is going to come at the same time every week. I think that a part of me is a champion for the little guy. Obviously, we’re talking about small business and mom & pops, but there’s got to be something said for the sheer convenience of our lives now due to so many of these trends.

[0:18:38.6] RW: That’s totally right. To be fair to the small guys, there’s also a sort of broader trend just — This has been happening for a while. It’s not necessarily a 2017 trend, but a way from sort of the big box retailers towards local boutique curated experiences. Frankly, that’s sort of — You look at — I’m in Cincinnati, Ohio and you look at Procter & Gamble who’s been a large CPG successful for many, many, many decades, but you’re seeing large CPG companies now starting to take it on the chin and hammer a bit of market share to these startup, boutique, subscription-based CPG retailers, like Dollar Shave Club or other sort of products like that, and it’s because they’re able to create these authentic one to one connections.

All that to say, because we’re all moving to this subscription lifestyle, whether it’s your example of your ClickList, or it’s something online. Getting one of those sales is becoming more and more valuable, which means the competition for each consumer is becoming hotter and hotter. You have to invest more to win a customer. If you’re able to get subscription revenue out of it, there was more in return. Anyways, interesting trend with how we just buy things, frankly. That affects small businesses and large businesses alike.

[0:19:50.3] AK: Yeah, I think that it just says about kind of the whole trajectory of where we’re headed as society. It’s really interesting. My grandma, she’s 83 and she Facetime’s me every day. Just to think of kind of the evolution of the phone from when she was little to the fact that her and I can be in different states and see each other every day is wild. It’s crazy to think where we’re going to be in terms of retail small businesses in the next 10, 15 years. It really is crazy.

AI Machine Learning

[0:20:24.3] RW: Yeah, that’s totally true. I guess the one thing I would add on to that as I think about 2018 trends, right? This is a thing that I personally am talking about at conferences and whoever will listen frankly quite a bit, which is kind of the impact that AI and machine learning is already having and we’ll continue to have on both physical product and retail experiences as well as particularly service-based industries, right? This idea that anybody who is providing some amount of commodity service of sort of transaction processing, any kind of task that’s replicable. Obviously, those sorts of things are succeptible to having a really nice machine learning algorithm just replace that entire. People are talking about entire industries that are potentially at risk of replacing it by AI. One of those industries is accounting, right? People read in article every week where people are saying, “Hey, accounting is obsolete and it’s going to be replaced by machines.”

I don’t believe that’s true of accounting or, frankly, of any industry entirely. I do think though the focus is shifting away from the kinds of services that I can provide that are sort of transaction-oriented and replicable and how do I — Those sorts of things will be automated. Frankly, what can be automated will be automated.

However, what machines are very bad at doing and what humans are very good at doing is providing creative thinking on top of these transaction processes. I think every industry is going to have to ask themselves what additional value add can we provide for our customers that are highly tailored, highly customized that has really value to their lives above and beyond the traditional just service that we’re providing.

Ultimately, those are the things that are going to retain customers, and everything else, like I said, that can be automated and certainly will be. AI and machine learning, I don’t know that that will have a world-beating impact on industries in 2018. I’d say 2018 is certainly the year that everybody has to ask themselves everything from truck driving down to, like I said, accounting, what are the creative elements that truly make us indispensable to our customers and how do we double down and reorganize around those things so we’re sort of future-proof against automation?

[0:22:34.2] AK: Yeah, I think that automation, like it gets such a bad rep for taking way jobs, but I actually think that’s it’s going to enhance a lot of the processes that we have now that make people, like you said, think creatively and provide more value, for sure.

Benefits of Automation

[0:22:50.3] RW: That’s exactly right. The reality is — I believe that it’s going to have a very positive impact on pretty much every industry including accounting. For instance, let’s say five years ago, I think you mentioned this at the top of the podcast, bookkeeping was a very — What bookkeeping looked like was I get manual receipts and I get paper bank statements, and I spend eight hours physically keying those into some piece of desktop software and then at the end of that I churn out a bank statement and a P&L. Frankly, that’s all I can do, because I’m already eight hours into this monthly engagements, and that’s already expensive enough, and so my client can afford me to do any more than that, but I’ve not added any value.

If we can move into a world in which machines can do most of what I just described, and now my eight hours can be devoted wholly to understanding the economics of the business and the strategy of the owners, what do they really want to get out of their business over the next 3, 5, 7, 10 years and work with them to help them make those decisions and understand their growth levers. Now, I can actually add value and I can do it for the same price point that I used to do, because all the sort of commodity stuff is being taken care of for me. I think if we all look at our industries in that light, I think we all have the ability to benefit from automation and not be harmed by it, but it is certainly a shift.

[0:24:08.3] AK: Yeah, it’s like having the best intern of all time.

[0:24:10.7] RW: That’s exactly right. Yeah, very cheap, very efficient intern. Who doesn’t want that? I’m in.

[0:24:16.9] AK: It sounds great to me. I want to transition a little bit. Like I said, this podcast is launching November 1st as a big part of our launch of our new resources marketplace. Another big project for us is Small Business Saturday, which comes after Thanksgiving and before Christmas and with Black Friday. There’s just a lot of holidays coming down the pipe for us and you never really think about how holidays affect retail other than what you see on TV where they’re all pulling their hair out, “Am I going to pass out at the end of the day on Black Friday?”

How do you think that holidays affect — I guess in terms of trends, we can talk online brick and mortar Small Business Saturday, but what are the holidays look like? Are they really large spikes? Is there a certain time of the year where everything comes down? What’s kind of the seasonality of a small business?

Holidays Effect on Small Businesses

[0:25:10.0] RW: For starters, obviously that depends quite a bit on the type of business. I would say, to some degree, every business is affected by the holidays. Whether you are a retailer or a manufacturer of goods that consumers buy, or you are a business that services companies that are retailers or manufacturers that people want to buy, right? Everybody is impacted.

A couple of things that are happening. Obviously, ecommerce is, without question, dominating. Every year it captures a larger and larger share of the holiday spend. No question that’s going to continue in 2017. One of the things that that is doing though is it’s — I think there is some amount of like Black Friday fatigue and there are more opportunities to reach buyers throughout the holiday cycle and not just on that one day.

I do think we’re starting to see that spikes smooth out a little bit over that period. Frankly, that’s a good trend for the small boutiques and the small manufacturers. I think there’s definitely a trend way from only shopping at big box retailers, and those folks are going to continue to see market share decline and folks are looking for more unique, authentic, curated experiences and gifts. You’re going to see that continue to increase.

As far as just like the timing and seasonality, again, on the retail side, certainly that’s where a lot of sales continue to occur and that will obviously continue. I think for sort of the B-to-B side, the holidays really mean more of just thoughtful planning. Certainly, it’s a drive season in even B-to-B software sales, but keeping in mind that in addition to high demand there’s also — How do I describe it? Low supply of their time. All that say, there’s Thanksgiving, which is almost a dead week. Right around the two weeks that surround Christmas and New Year are also kind of a dead week.

You’ve got folks that are trying to cram a larger than average amount of sales and a smaller than average period of time. A; obviously, that’s pretty crazy. B, it just requires some careful planning and organization to make certain that you’re coordinating with your buyers or customers to make those things happen.

[0:27:12.8] AK: Right.

[0:27:13.1] RW: Anyways, nothing beyond those for this year.

[0:27:17.7] AK: For small businesses. Yeah. My cookie business, now we’ve made it through the holidays. We’re trying to project next year. We’re trying to get everything going for the next year. What advice do you have for me for financially planning ahead? What does that cycle kind of look like?

Small Business Financial Planning

[0:27:35.0] RW: Yeah, as far as financial planning ahead. Certainly, this is the time of the year to do that, right? November is obviously starting to get kind of crazy, but this is the time of the year to kind of be introspective about the things that have succeeded and failed. Certainly, it’s important to get some — I mean, so I’ll kind of go back to the advice around getting a team, a small team let’s say, of mentors advisers, like an accountant and a lawyer who have a lot of expertise around your industry, who not only had seen, have their 10,000 hours in your specific area, but are also observing data points in the moment that can kind of speak to you about trends that they’re seeing around similar business to yours.

Really, again, just being introspective about the things that you learn over the past year and engaging these professionals to help plan out your projections for 12 months and 24 months down the road. This is also a great time to be talking from a tax planning perspective. Something that we haven’t really talked about is the compliance side of this, the tax side of this.

A lot of people like to think about tax season, April as being the time of the year where I can get an accountant who can come and do a bunch of financial wizardry and really reduce my tax liability. The reality is once the year is over, there’s probably not a lot that you can do to change your tax liability for the period that’s already over, but you can do some thoughtful planning around the future, the following year to come, and these areas are around things like how you’re organized. Perhaps, organizing as an S-corp is a good solution for you and can help reduce your tax liability. Retirement planning is one area where business owners can defer quite a bit of tax liability into the future.

Engaging professionals at the beginning of the year, particularly January is a time to have really good thoughtful conversations with tax accountants before they get super busy around April and March and April deadlines. I’d say those two things are suggestions I would have for folks that are thinking about 2018 and beyond.

[0:29:35.3] AK: Bryan, thank you so much. There’re so many takeaways from this that you’re going to be able to look back on our blog and we’re going to have Bryan’s podcast embedded as well as having his five main points. I really think that a lot of the stuff that you said today kind of will resonate with not only just the small business owners, but anyone that’s thinking, “How do I start a business and where do I start?”

Before I let you go, I want to ask you three more questions. These are my big three.

Q&A with Bryan

[0:30:02.5] RW: Okay. Oh, boy!

[0:30:04.3] AK: First thing that comes to mind, just let it go. Ready? Bryan, what did you have for breakfast today?

[0:30:10.9] RW: I had a homemade egg McMuffin.

[0:30:13.5] AK: Ohh! That sounds really good.

[0:30:15.3] RW: Yeah, I have that every day. It’s delicious.

[0:30:16.9] AK: A homemade egg with muffin. You it make yourself?

[0:30:20.6] RW: My wife and I, we collaborate on it. Yes, it’s homemade. Yup.

[0:30:23.4] AK: Oh, that’s so nice. A little duet.

[0:30:26.0] RW: That’s right.

[0:30:26.4] AK: Number two; if any actor, dead or alive, could play you in the movie of your life, who would play you and why?

[0:30:34.5] RW: That’s a good question. I would say — The first thing in mind was Ben Stiller, and the only reason I say that, first of all, he’s a funny guy and I like that, but I can constantly compare to him in the way that we look. I think that’s probably just for aesthetic accuracy, I think it’s Ben Stiller.

[0:30:49.4] AK: Okay. Good to know. Lastly, if you could play a professional sport for any team at any sport, what would it be and why?

[0:30:58.4] RW: It’s a good question. It wouldn’t actually be for a team. I think I would play professional golf, and the reason I say — Two reasons. One; I certainly love being outside. Two; I’m terrible at gold and I played enough to be frustrated by being terrible. I like the idea of being suddenly much better at it.

[0:31:19.2] AK: That’s my answer. I am so bad, but I want to be so good.

[0:31:24.0] RW: It’s just the most frustrating sport in the world. If I can just erase that frustration from my whole life, I’d do it.

[0:31:28.9] AK: My therapist thinks that that’s not a stress reliever for me, it’s a stress inducer. That’s what she says.

[0:31:33.8] RW: That’s definitely true for me too. I have actually come to the realization of that. I’ve decided, “You know what? That’s not how I unwind anymore.”

[0:31:41.9] AK: That’s so funny. Ryan, thank you so much again for calling in, helping us out.

[0:31:47.4] RW: Of course!

Conclusion & Goodbye

[0:31:48.2] AK: Guys, you can check out — Ryan, do you want to plug anything? Anything? Your social media. Do you want people to check you out on LinkedIn if anybody has any questions? I know that they can go to Xero, but plug away.

[0:32:01.0] RW: Yeah, certainly. Obviously, if you want to learn more about Xero as a product, visit the website; Absolutely — Except LinkedIn connection, so Follow me on Twitter @ryankwatson. Certainly, for those folks that find themselves in these sort of B-to-B SaSS venture backable space digital agencies, you can check out our accounting firm’s website at

[0:32:21.4] AK: Awesome. Thank you, Ryan.

[0:32:23.2] RW: Thanks, Amy.

If you enjoyed this podcast, be sure to check out a few of our other episodes with inspiring guests, such as Upcycling Fashion with JT Marburger.