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Rettig Sessions #2: Traps and Blessings, Businesses in Crisis

hosted by Hunter Mariano

Business and Tech Talks Video

Hunter: Alright, Patrick, thanks for this time. Uh, Patrick Rettig of The Rettig Corporation. He’s here, he’s um, we’re gonna do a little discussion and talk about business. He helps businesses in need of financial turnaround and businesses in crisis and uh he’s also a dictionary, he’s come up with these terms and there’s a few terms that I’ve read, that I want to talk with him about today. Uh, starting right away with what you’ve called the black forest. And I like the Black Forest because, I mean really, I don’t want to take the answer from you but-but you talk about, well you know what I’ll just let you describe it. The Black Forest, there’s a little bit of Wizard of Oz reference here….

Patrick Rettig: Oh, ya ya ya ya ya. And you know like, if any of you are familiar with The Wizard of Oz, You’re probably over 30. Uh but the Wizard of Oz, you should google it! It was a great story about choices. The Yellow Brick Road took you to Oz, right. And if you got off the Yellow Brick Road you went into the Black Forest where the witches were and the monsters and the hobgoblins and all that right? It’s a lot like business, you have to stay to the straight and narrow but the allure, right, the allure is the Black Forest. That’s where people get to ride broomsticks, right?

Hunter: Broomsticks, right.

Patrick: And they get to wear cool little monkey clothes, right. And it’s like, the shortcuts are in there, right

Hunter: its funny for a season until the house drops on ya

Patrick: exactly! Until the house drops on, right right. The wicked witch of the West. Ok, but the best way to stay on the straight and narrow is to decide what you stand for. To decide that you stand for a correct living. Now you notice we’re in a compound here, this is the Rettig Corp Compound, the secret hideout of Rettig Corp, hideout. I have had wonderful offices in the middle of the city of Los Angeles. You know the kind that has cement floors, you know what I’m talking about, right? Blacked out ceilings with the air conditioner ducts going through them and it was cool, it was also very expensive, right. Here in the compound, we come up with all of our secret dialogue. And you can find that when I finally get the book out but what we’re talking about today, staying on the straight and narrow requires creativity for good things. Win-win situations that we talked about earlier in a 60-second spot. Umm actually uh creating ideas that are good for the company as a whole, not just the owner. But a long story short, you gotta learn to stand for goodness, honesty, integrity, dignity and it’s hard to do. Myself included. We all stumble, we all fall and the measure of the man is how fast he gets off of it, you know, how fast he gets off of it you know and gets back on track.

Hunter: Ya, and that is another term. The Origin of Failure. Now when it comes to that business owner that is taking that first step off of The Yellow Brick Road, as you say, into that Black Forest, what, what, we talk about what keeps you on the yellow brick road. What are some of those things, like the bad behaviors, that will start taking steps in the wrong direction?

P: You know, we all have, we all are familiar with the allure of sin and the black forest because it’s fun, right? And the temptation to do things you shouldn’t is so fun. And you know we pay the price the next day. For all of you out there who drink too much, drugs, relationships you should stay away from, boy at the time, it’s a gas. The next day, not so much. So the origin of failure is a tricky sort of mesmerizing place. It requires you to, what I call, accept points of failure along the way. A point of failure. So like, in business, you let this guy off the hook, he doesn’t have to pay you for sixty days, for ninety days, for a hundred days. You accept that. You decide to stay at work too long when obviously your brain isn’t working. You decide to take a loan because you didn’t do your receivables today. You don’t feel like getting your receivables. You can’t get them. There’s an argument. You decide the worst one of all, that you’re gonna sue somebody. Boy, I’m telling ya the highest- we’ll talk about that some other time. But the most expensive thing on the line item is revenge. Nobody can afford revenge but we accept all these things as maybe its so we point negative. Point negative. Point negative. Point negative. So we finally find ourselves in that proverbial, the straw that broke the camel’s back. And finally you make that one decision that throws the company into a freefall and now you’re out of money, you’re out of options. You’ve got real problems and you’re in a free fall. You can’t do anything about it. Best that you call me.

H: You give people second chances. Now, you talked about that the other day with me. You said I get everybody to a second chance. If they take that step off the yellow brick road, you give them that second chance to get back on the road. Tell me why a second chance is important and tell me if there’s such thing as a third chance in this line of work. How important is that second chance?

P: Well, if you are my client, you’re an overachiever at not only doing well but also an overachiever at not doing well. So when you fail, you’ve given it hell as they say. Well, the flip side of that is I totally believe that heaven above gives us a second chance. When you get with me, we get ourselves we’ve all traveled into the black forest as we talked about and we make our way back to the yellow brick road. And we go back to that point that origin of failure. And at that point, you make a choice. You make a choice. That choice is I am going to succeed. I am going to live correctly. I am going to make correct choices and I am going to be the kind of guy that my kids can be proud of. I’m gonna make mistakes, I’m gonna fail, I’m gonna fall but I’m gonna step back up again. I’m telling you man when heaven comes down upon you and gives you that second chance, which I see all the time in business, now you choose the big one: whether or not I’m going to invest my second chance or I’m gonna spend it. I’m gonna go right back down the black forest and I’m gonna gamble my second chance away. I’m gonna go back to my old ways, I’m gonna do it the way because why? People say it all the time. You don’t understand my business. Well, my big joke is, I’m looking at your balance sheet buddy. Apparently, you don’t understand your business either so let’s try my way. Let’s try correct living, dudes come back, let’s do a second chance. And this time, let’s do it better.

H: For sure.
P: For sure.

H: We got one more term and it talks about those important things that we gotta keep in check, keep in check as we’re on that yellow brick road. Two sides of a coin. You know there’s two sides to every coin. There’s a top and a bottom, equally important to create value to the coin. You say the top is is it encompasses the things that are you know seen on the bottom, things that are not seen. All important. But why don’t you take us through your term. Two sides of a coin.

P: Uh currency, right? If I have a quarter or a silver dollar, I love silver dollars. Especially the old ones are so cool right? They have artwork and everything. But their worth a lot because the top and bottom is perfect. You know, obviously the more perfect it is, the more the silver coin is worth, right? And there’s even gold silver dollars now, wow you know? To be a correct coin it needs to have a top and a bottom. Ok? And the top is the top and the bottom is the bottom and the artwork goes. Let’s think about all relationships like that, okay? The top being administration, the top being all about how to administrate your company. Banking, DMV, insurance, how to produce, deliver, and collect, how to make deals. All administration. But without the bottom, the coin is not worth anything. The bottom is organic. That is the place of love and balance, compassion.

H: Creativity.

P: Creativity, yes, creativity. Without both sides of the coin, it’s not it’s not worth anything. And there is no really good administration without the organic nature of a relationship. For us to do this, we have to have a relationship. We have to want to do what I’m doing. I have to want to do what we’re doing here together. We’re working on a thing to bring people in to help them. Well, as soon as they come, I have to administrate that thing. There is so much to that, you know? If you think about it, on top we have administration, on the bottom we have heaven. C’mon man is that cool? C’mon everybody is like I don’t know if I like the way you’re saying that. Who cares? Who cares if you like the way I’m saying it. C’mon. Put your own words in there but kids. We want a coin, we want to be worth something and in order to do that we have to have both sides of that coin habited. C’mon.

H: Well to summarize what we’ve talked about, you know your job you keep people on the yellow brick road and so I want you to give a few just a closing thought for those who might be listening today and they might be veering into that black forest and they know it, maybe they don’t know it.

P: They’re lost in the black forest. They don’t know how to get out.

H: And they’re like in the black forest so what can you do for them?

P: First of all, this is an invitation. So I’m standing at the yellow brick road where the path has gone off into the black forest with that lantern. I’m wielding that lantern so that you can see that light to come back this way. And it’s not for everybody. This path I’m talking about, the yellow brick road, it’s not for everybody. I wish it was but it’s not. It’s not easy. The yellow brick road is not smooth. The yellow brick road is mountainous. Yeah, man. It’s mountainous and by the way, in our theme of Oz, the yellow brick road, when you get to Oz, Oz is the first stop. There’s a whole bunch of stuff on the other side of it. But it’s not easy. It’s not for everybody. And some people walk with me on the yellow brick road for a while but then they quit. They go back out into the black forest. They go back. And I suppose that you can live in the black forest for as long as you’re alive. But it’s not as much fun as the yellow brick road. The yellow brick road goes farther. Correct living is what I’m saying. I know we’re kinda getting lost in the yellow brick road and black forest and all that. But there is a correct path and it is not for everybody. It’s hard and I’m not for everybody, you know. Clearly, my studio here, we meet via the secret location of the Rettig Corp. We meet in here and we study financials, thick financials. We study forecast, we study people and their dynamics, the relationships that they have with their companies. And a lot of music. We got a lot of music going on here. We got a lot of creativity and we got a lot of relationships. But I’m standing on the yellow brick road. I can’t go in the black forest and get you, man. You gotta walk out. I’ve been in the black forest. We all are tempted by the black forest so dudes, dudettes, follow the light. C’mon. Get back over here. And then let’s climb the yellow brick road together. And by the way, in case, as long as we’re using these metaphors, the black forest is smooth. That ride into the black forest, it’s like smooth. Like if you were a skateboarder, smooth ride all the way down. Okay? All the way into chaos. And if you’re in the black forest right now, you’re experiencing chaos, frustration, you’re alone, people don’t understand where you’re at or they have a whole lot of information that you should’ve done. You know what you should’ve done. You know what you did? Why, I can’t believe. If I was you. You know? None of that matters, man. If you need somebody who’s been there. And I have a way to get out. I’ve helped a lot of people but like I said, I wish it was for everybody. Look, correct path is hard. It is not easy. But there’s more, there’s no ceiling on correct living. You can be anything, do anything. You just have to pay the price and the price is correctness. I keep using that word but there’s just no other way to say it. And for those of you that can’t make it back, try. Try. Call the number. What do you got to lose? C’mon. I let people work for two weeks for free like just to see if our relationship will work. And so like if you can get it from me in two weeks, you don’t have to pay me. I tell people all the time, rob me. You know? Rob me. See what you can do. You know, this is a second chance. And second chances, when you invest them, they rock’n’roll man. Rock’n’roll.

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