Authenticity in the Financial Industry with Marilyn Macha

In this episode, Marilyn Macha talks about authenticity and transparency in the financial industry. She also shares her thoughts on how it's not about the money; that there's a bigger picture. She goes into detail on transparency, that it is one of her biggest lessons learned, and how that all comes from your 'why'. Marilyn Macha, Executive Coach and Corporate Consultant knows the answer! After 20 years of running one of the top financial services firms in the country, yet finding she felt a longing for more from life, Marilyn has discovered and developed a proven formula for helping high-performing women reach an entirely new level of aliveness and success – both personally and professionally. Today we are talking to one of the members of the Clear Business Directory. Folks, you're in for a treat today as Marilyn Macha is joining us today on the show. She is by [...]

Transparency with 3D Printing Experts – Tom & Tracy Hazzard

Tom and Tracy Hazzard have worked as ghost designers behind such well-know brands as Martha Stewart Living, X-Rocker and Bayside Furnishings. They have had products in all major retailers, wholesale clubs, electronics boutiques and office super stores. Their best-selling mesh office chair has been in Costco for over 4 years straight. Tracy pens a regular featured Inc. column on innovation. Tom and Tracy have designed over 200 products to include products found in Costco. Listen in as they discuss 3D Printing and what it means to operate a Transparent Business. Today, we are interviewing one of the members of the Clear Business Directory on what it means to operate a transparent business. Our guests today are Tracy and Tom Hazzard. They specialize in product design and development. They are the owners of Hazz Design Consulting and joined us on the show today. Tom and Tracy, welcome to the show. [...]

Diving Deep Into Business Relationships with September Dohrmann

September Dohrmann is the CEO of CEO Space International. Her role in the company encompasses rebranding, HR, office management, and finding external solutions for the company. CEO Space believes in cooperation among businesses; they seek to build a community that encourages and educates in conference settings. In this episode, she talks about the importance of building business relationships and how CEO Space aims to achieve that. We go into a deep dive on how business relationships help you grow and succeed as a business, even as your own business needs changes and you evolve. Today, we're actually talking to one of my favorite people in the planet, September Dohrmann, the President and CEO of CEO Space International. Before I bring September on to the show, I do want to give a huge shout out to CEO Space as an organization because it's where Tonya and I got [...]

Building A High Level Community with Shannon Gronich

Our guest today is one of the members of the Clear Business Directory, Shannon Gronich, of the Business Acceleration Summit. She runs a business conference that really helps small businesses grow through building a high level community. She’s implemented the Clear Directory as part of this process. You can attend the Business Acceleration Summit and know with full confidence that the people that are on her stage have been vetted for frauds and scams. Today, we are interviewing one of the members of the Clear Business Directory, Shannon Gronich of the Business Acceleration Summit. I’m super excited to have Shannon on the show. She’s by far one of my favorite people on the planet. I’m even more excited because not only is she a member of the Clear Business Directory, but she’s also an advocate because she does run a business conference that really helps small [...]

The Complexities Of Raising Capital with Russell Weigel

Russell Weigel is a securities attorney and a member of the Clear Business Directory. Through Investment Attorneys, he helps his clients with compliance matters, arbitration defense or investigation defense. In this episode, Russell talks about the importance of due diligence, of being transparent to his clients as well as the other way around, and of trust, particularly in the securities industry. He also discusses education in raising capital and how being educated allows people to avoid a lot of mistakes that may get them in trouble. Today, we’re super excited because we’re talking to one of the members of the Clear Business Directory, Russell Weigel. He is a securities attorney, his business is the Investment Attorneys. I’m super excited to have him here because he brings a plethora of information to the business world. If you're raising capital, if you’ve ever dealt with bringing in investors, it’s so important [...]

Due Diligence: Conspiracy Theory vs. Corporate Counterintelligence

Due Diligence:  Conspiracy Theory vs. Corporate Counterintelligence  Let’s face it who doesn’t love a good conspiracy theory? There can be a ton of fun in speculating the who-done-it. However, conspiracy theory can quickly become an emotional roller coaster, especially when a theory assumes that some underlying force is out to get us (or a client).  While conspiracy theory can be fun and entertaining, conspiracy theory really has no place in the business world. Conspiracy Theory  This by definition is “a belief that some covert but influential organization or person is responsible for a circumstance or event.” So how does this even enter into the realm of due diligence and business? Simple, often times we come across people who feel they have some understanding of what corporate counterintelligence is and because of the movies, or some misguided understanding, they automatically equate anything “bad” that happens in any business setting as [...]

Child Care Providers – Labor & Lullabies

Child care providers operating in transparency is important. Bringing home a newborn can be one of the most exciting experiences. Having someone to assist with your transition into parenthood makes the experience even more amazing. Knowing the company you hired is in The Clear Business Directory brings peace of mind. Listen in as we talk with the founder of Labor & Lullabies, Lisa Louden.

How to do a Company Information Search

Small business owners and entrepreneurs alike always ask how they can do a company information search. This goes way beyond yelp and the yellow pages. If you truly want to mitigate your risk you have to go further. Listen in as we give you the tools you can use to mitigate your risk.  

Guns, Guns, Guns…what is a criminal background check and is it the answer for gun control?

Guns, Guns, Guns...What is a criminal background check and is it the answer for gun control? What do gun control and background checks have in common with business? Listen in as we discuss this hot topic and answer the question on whether or not a criminal background check is the answer for gun control and how it ties into business.    

What do Companies Check in a Background Check

Background checks are not all they are not what you think. Listen in as we explore the areas background check companies cover and how they are not applicable to business transactions.  

Do you need to run a business credit check as part of your due diligence?

The idea of a business credit check is a confusing topic to most people. It’s not a well-known idea in all honesty. The quick answer is “it depends”. It depends on why you’re doing due diligence. Let’s say you’re doing it in the realm of business, obviously. But it depends on what the deal is. If you’re looking to bring on somebody to do a website for you and you’re just outsourcing the service, a business credit check is pretty insignificant in that decision-making process. You need to know if they can build the website that you need them to build. That doesn’t have anything to do with a credit check. So here are three points to help you make a decision if you should do a business credit check: 1. Identify the situation Let’s say you do have a situation where it is applicable, such as a merger acquisition. [...]

Four secrets background check companies don’t want you to know

There are four big secrets background check companies don’t want you to know. 1. They are not magical. Background check companies pull from public records, and those public records depend on databases.  If the database is not up to date because an individual hasn’t lived in an address for a certain period of time, that information is not going to show up. 2. Overemphasizing importance of Criminal Checks Criminal Check One of the things background checks look are criminal records.  The problem with doing a background check solely for criminal records is that criminal records are only good if the person has been caught. More importantly, not every single state reports up to a national criminal database. Colorado, for example, is one of those states and does not report to the national database. Local agencies within certain states don’t even report up to the state level. As such you would [...]

Instead of a criminal search, what else can I do to look into a business?

There is so much more you can do when looking into a business, especially since a criminal search is not applicable to every business. The answer gets into the mechanics of how you do due diligence and what due diligence looks like looks like. Here are some other things you can do when looking into a business Look at the business history. Often times people won’t stop and take a look at the business history and how long a business has been doing something. Now, take into consideration, that sometimes you will come into contact with a business that is in start-up mode. They may have only been in business for six months. That’s fine. When we first got started, we had no business experience, but we had transferable skill sets and experience that translated over into what we were doing. You can take a look at somebody’s employment history [...]

What happens if you discover derogatory information during a criminal history check?

First off, we advocate for a self-disclosure process prior to doing any kind of vetting or due diligence on somebody. The reason for that is it gives them an opportunity to tell you what may or may not be in their background. Then when you go about the process, if you discover something, the first thing you do is see if they have disclosed it. If it was not disclosed, that doesn’t necessarily mean they’re lying to you. It may be that they are not aware that information is out there, depending on how far back it was or how inconsequential. Let’s say it was a pretty significant deal and they didn’t disclose it to you. Now you have information you can go back to them with and say, “This is what we uncovered in our due diligence process. Can you give us more information about this?” Again, in total [...]

Background Check Companies – The 3 Reasons Why You Should NEVER do a background check

With the slew of background check companies online it can be easy to get swayed into paying for what appears a quick and easy answer to your hiring problem. However,  as a business owner you should never do background checks. Sounds kind of funny coming from the due diligence people, right? But the biggest misconception about who we are and what we do at Avent-Guard is that “we perform background checks” for businesses. Nope, we don’t. Matter of fact we advocate AGAINST solely doing background checks because they are unreliable. There are so many factors that go into what a background check is and what it’s not that I won’t waste your time explaining them all. Here is a few reasons why you should not do background checks 1. Not all government and law enforcement agencies are required to report information. For that matter most are not required to have [...]

How to do a Background Check: Where the Spy World meets the business world – Understanding Due Diligence.

I is important to understand that even if you know how to do a background that background checks do NOT constitute full due diligence. The concept of due diligence is vast, obscure and overwhelming. Most of our clients privately confess to us that they only have a vague idea of what due diligence means and absolutely NO idea how to do it. Sound familiar? If so, don’t worry, you’re in good company. Most people throw around the term due diligence and claim they do it, but secretly hope no one ever asks them specifics about it. Most never really understand what it is, when to do it, where to look for information, who to trust to do it, etc. and so on. BusinessDictionary.com defines due diligence as: “The duty of a firm's directors and officers to act prudently in evaluating associated risks in all transactions.” What we have discovered is [...]

How to do Background Check: What Business Can Learn From Government Failures

All the training in the world and all of the information on how to do a background check won't protect your business. The government does background checks and they don't work. As you may recall the Office of Personnel Management had a major security breach in June, affecting 14 million individuals who hold security clearances. A recent Business Insider Article titled “The US agency plundered by Chinese hackers made one of the dumbest security moves possible” covers some of the major issues that led to the breach of information. The article points out some “common sense” security practices, such as basic data encryption, that were overlooked by OPM. But encryption was not the biggest failure…not doing any due diligence on the service provider is what ultimately brought about the security breach. Did they do a background check? Most likely. Did they fully vet the people, definitely no. The article highlights [...]