We had the good fortune of connecting with Robert Kandell and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Robert, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
At 13, I was delivering 100 newspapers every day to the houses in my neighborhood. My income was mainly based on the tips which could range from $1/week to $5. I realized that if I could make my customers happier there would be more cash every week. One day, I asked my Dad to make photocopies of a survey I had written which I included in the Monday paper. Questions like “what is the best time for me to collect the weekly fees?” and “where do you want your paper to go?” and “how can I serve your better?” was among the questions. The response was positive and my tips went up. It was my first attempt at being an entrepreneur outside the box of just delivering the paper. I’ve never stopped. While I have had positions with other companies, they were just springboards to me returning to running my own business. My current financial consulting firm was born from a desire to take the skills I had learned in my amazing career to help others build their dreams. I love helping visionaries who fear numbers, spreadsheets, and budgets and make it palatable (even exciting) to help them succeed. I know my support of them will positively impact the world.
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
My business offers business consulting, fractional CFO and bookkeeping services. We provide a holistic approach to business, starting with the owner’s state of mind (i.e. psychology, limiting beliefs, communication challenges), help with team-building, and provide financial support for the business to growth in a healthy and deliberate fashion. We take the companies’ concepts, income model, expenses, payroll and translate english into Excel providing the owner with an easy-to-use forecast to help plot the course for the business. We answer important questions like “how much startup money do I need?”, “when can i hire this person?” and “how much is left over for the owner to get paid!” Companies are often under-capitalized and building a proper forecast to analyze the impact of decisions can avoid significant cash-flow issues down the line. My company, Kandell Consulting, is my fourth business I’ve created so it was definitely easier than the previous three. I have learned the hard way about what to do and what not to do in business. My second company, OneTaste, was eight years in the red until we turned the corner into an 8-figure international business. It was a LONG, challenging ramp-up period that eventually was a stellar success. My third business, LA Mother, was a great concept that didn’t have the financing and ended up being a major bust. Lessons, lessons, lessons. I lived by Winston Churchill great quote, “If you’re going through Hell, keep going” It is important to keep moving through these challenges, gather your strength, lean on your support system and keep faith that there is a brighter light at the end of a dark tunnel. My main belief is that our most important attribute is our belief in ourselves. I learned that “self-esteem is built upon esteemable acts” Even in our most challenging moments, there is just part. of this mysterious life journey and here for us to build our mastery.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
In the time of the pandemic, I would recommend spending time in nature. I love the various trails near Malibu like Tuna Canyon Park or Escondido Fall. I like going to the beach at sunset with my dogs and watching the sunset and jumping in and out of the ocean. My favorite place to get food is the Calabasas Erewhon where you can get healthy, excellent food and sit outside. For live entertainment these days, I still like walking the Venice boardwalk on the weekends where all the kookiest performance share their talents.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I’d like to acknowledge Ali Katz of EyesWideOpenLife.com for having a significant impact in my career. I’ve worked with her for over four years now and continue to be wowed by her passion, her expertise, and her passion for helping entrepreneurs, mostly women, have the confidence to start their businesses. Working as her CFO and consulting partner, I learn every time we speak to a client, encourage her to find her greatness, and look at the shadows that stop us.