“If you do not pay yourself first, you’ll have to go do something else to sustain yourself.” Amanda Neely

When you are in the business of serving people, striking a balance between sustainability and serving is key to survival. This is according to our guest today, Amanda Neely, who having run a successful business for years, insists that business people need to get their financial status in order so as to ensure profitability and sustainability of their businesses.

Amanda Neely is a small business and financial professional. She founded and ran Overflow Coffee Bar, L3C from 2008 through 2018. Now, she shares her experiential knowledge through podcasting and through developing personalized financial strategies for individuals and couples and profitability strategies for businesses. Her goal is to work with people to take charge of their cash flow, leverage their assets, and increase their profitability in ways that would make their grandma proud.

In today’s episode, Amanda will discuss about her time in the military as well as in business. She will also talk about some of the important lessons she learnt while running her business and how she shares the wisdom with the world.

Listen in!

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  • I met my husband after he was done being in the Marine Corps so I don’t have direct experience of being a spouse of someone who is actively serving. [2:40]
  • I wouldn’t change anything about his experience with the Marines because it is what has gotten us through some of the worst times of entrepreneurship. [3:01]
  • The service mentality that also was part of my husband is what led us to start a business. [5:57]
  • I was working for a nonprofit trying to give back and make a difference when I realized that actually small businesses really change the world. [6:13]
  • That’s what led us to start the coffee shop where we wanted to know the bean to cup story and make sure that the farmers are being paid well. [6:32]
  • We are a legitimate social enterprise, we are for a purpose prior to a profit and we had to always put that purpose first. [7:06]
  • We were a couple years into the coffee shop when we met a certified financial planner. [9:24]
  • We were doing documentary showings and he chose a documentary about how money really works and showed it as a documentary screening. [9:29]
  • When the credits rolled, I was mad that he had never told us this before and that we had put ourselves really where we were which was on the edge of bankruptcy. [9:36]
  • I forced him to sit down with us and a couple of years later, we’d paid off our business debt and our student debt and we had gotten the business to a stable place. [10:02]
  • I had also been introduced to this concept called profit first and we started instead of paying ourselves last we started paying ourselves first. [10:17]
  • We were able to sell the business to a nonprofit who continued that mission and were able to even add their own mission to it to be an incubator of small businesses on the Southside of Chicago. [10:43]
  • We decided that we had to continue being in service to others and being a voice of change. [10:59]
  • We decided to help people get their stories with money into a better place and help them by empowering them to make the difference they need in their financial stories. [11:17]
  • Commercial break. [11:41]
  • If you do not pay yourself first, you’ll have to go do something else to sustain yourself and eventually it could come in time where you can’t work because of burnout. [13:42]
  • We work a lot with entrepreneurs and small business owners who often get to the point where they realize the biggest risk they are taking financially is with their business. [14:08]
  • A lot of times in your active military you can get help with financial planning but afterwards, it’s a little harder to know who to talk to. [17:30]
  • It is about having that connection with the military and with entrepreneurship, and trying to figure out how to manage all the different buckets to make sure you are doing what’s best for you. [17:46]
  • Other military people have been really interested in real estate and I love to assist real estate investors to be able to figure out some of those big questions. [18:19]
  • To be able to have those conversations with people brings me a lot of joy and I think helps them get more clarity as well. [20:17]
  • When we think about grandma, we picture an old woman maybe just hanging out and doing nothing. [12:07]
  • I love talking about grandma when she was in the prime of her life and she had huge potential and she took advantage of it. [20:18]
  • If you picture the grandma how they were like when they were your age and what they were doing then, there’s a lot that we can learn. [21:51]

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Thank you to our April Sponsor: Entrepreneur’s Guide to Financial Well-Being or Wayne Titus

Imagine starting a long journey without a map…or even a clear idea of the obstacles ahead. That’s exactly what it’s like for entrepreneurs who start companies with a lot of passion, but without the financial expertise to grow and scale their businesses and create long-term wealth for their families.

 Wayne Titus shows you how to find a financial adviser who can help you map a better journey. In his book, The Entrepreneur’s Guide to Financial Well-Being.  With the right adviser at your side, you’ll have the freedom to focus on what really matters to you.

Get The Entrepreneur’s Guide to Financial Well-Being at Amazon.com and in the virtual bookstore on the Shock Your Potential app.