Welcome to the Rialto Marketing podcast. Today's episode is a revenue acceleration series interview where we talk to seven figure B2B professional service firm owners that are actively trying to grow their business and get to the next level. We talk about the good, the bad and the ugly so that you can learn from their experience.

Join Tim Fitzpatrick and Robert Blackwell Jr. for this week’s episode of The Rialto Marketing Podcast!

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There Is A Formula For Everything

Tim Fitzpatrick
Welcome to the Rialto Marketing podcast. Today's episode is a Revenue Acceleration Series interview where we talk to seven-figure B2B professional service firm owners that are actively trying to grow their business and get to the next level. We talk about the good, the bad, and the ugly so that you can learn from their experience. I am Tim Fitzpatrick with Rialto Marketing, where we believe you must remove your revenue roadblocks to accelerate growth, and marketing shouldn't be difficult. Thank you so much for taking the time to tune in. I am super excited to have Robert Blackwell Jr. From Quant16 with me today. Robert, welcome, and thanks for being here. Thank you so much. And I see your title, Unemployable Math Misfit. We are both math majors. We're going to geek out today. So it's not often I get to connect with other math majors, so I'm excited.

Robert Blackwell Jr.
Terrific.

Tim Fitzpatrick
Yes. So before we jump into the heart of the interview, I want to ask you a few rapid fire questions if you are ready to jump in with both feet. So really quickly, what do you do and how long have you been doing it?

Robert Blackwell Jr.
What do I do? You mean as far as in the company?

Tim Fitzpatrick
What does your company do and how long have you been doing it?

Robert Blackwell Jr.
Okay, so what I would say is our company, the name of the company is Quant16. The legal name of company is Electronic Knowledge Interchange. The history of that is back in '92, I wrote a system that would categorize knowledge across an organization, and I called it electronic knowledge interchange. It came out about the same time electronic data interchange came out. Then a few years later, I started I had another company, and I had, I should have taken a marketing class before I did that. The name of the company was Electronic Knowledge Interchange. Of course, that got bastardized in the EKI and EKI digital and I mean, later we changed it to EKI Digital because the EKI website wasn't available. It was EKI-consulting. It was a gigantic brand mess. Then about, I would say about four years ago, I was talking to some friends of mine who were traders, guys that we had met through my other company, Killer Spin. I said, Man, I wish I could go back to trading. Then I decided, Okay, I am going to shift our company to being like a quantitative hedge fund for industry and government, and then change the name of the company to Quant16.

Tim Fitzpatrick
So your hedge fund?

Robert Blackwell Jr.
Well, no. What I would say is we use the mindset, math, and methods of the quantitative hedge fund to buy it to industry and government. Is that the rule that came out... I came out of.

Tim Fitzpatrick
Got it. Okay. What's the most important lesson you've learned in running your businesses?

Robert Blackwell Jr.
I would say I've learned lots of, I don't know if there's a single one, but I've learned lots of lessons. I would say a big one is Nobody cares about you. They care about themselves. It is very typical. I remember when I was younger, very much like most technical people. My father was a salesperson at IBM. In fact, I worked at IBM for a little while in my early 20s. I remember my father was a great salesman, but I was pretty good technically. I always tried to get my father to leave. Why don't you leave IBM and you can come work for me? I can do all the hard stuff. You can just do the sales stuff. Very typical of a techie that thinks all you got to do is to have a good system and then everybody is just going to flock to you. It's not true. Obviously, it is not true. I would say a lesson that I've learned lots of lessons. But the one thing is that the most important thing is Nobody cares about you. They care about themselves. So you either have to solve an emotional or financial problem that somebody's willing to pay you for, where it costs you less to deliver the value than they're paying you for the value. I would say that is a big one for me.

Tim Fitzpatrick
Thank you for sharing that because I talk about that all the time when we talk about marketing messaging. We don't want to talk about ourselves because nobody cares about us. What they care about is how we can help them get from where they are to where they want to be. So that's an incredible lesson to have learned because a lot of people struggle with that. Now, we also know you've been in business for a long time, and we know that growing a business can be hard at times. Do you have any mantra or something motivational that you say to yourself, share with your team to push through those times when you're running into roadblocks?

Robert Blackwell Jr.
Well, I would say that, listen, I think I'm one of the luckiest people on Earth. I started out being born to two really great parents who had no dough. My mother was 20 and my father was 23 when I was born, and they were so poor, they couldn't pay attention. But they were very educated and people of good character. I was lucky to be the oldest of five, and my parents just gave me a set of rules. Say, If you follow the rules, go do whatever you want to do. I was lucky that my parents didn't have much money to give me, so I had to go figure it out. At five years old, I would walk to school and pick up recycling bottles. At eight years old, I started a company. I would notice that people, when they would go to the candy store during recess, if they got back late, back in those days, so I was born in 1960s, teachers would hit you with paddles. That was part of the discipline or whatever. I said, I think people would give me money to avoid punishment. I went and bought gum for five cents and sold it for a dime when I was eight, and I started to make a lot of money. So anyway, I feel like that I've been really blessed in my life. So I've learned lots of lessons.

Tim Fitzpatrick
Do you remember how many rules your parents had?

Robert Blackwell Jr.
Yeah, I do.

Tim Fitzpatrick
Do you remember any of them?

Robert Blackwell Jr.
Yeah, 100%. My father's rule was... I don't know if it's a rule, but it was something Always do your best. Just give your best. Remember that you can always make more money back, but you can never get your name back. Protect your reputation. People won't forgive you for being dishonest. They'll forgive you for making mistakes. And don't piss off your mother. That was a big one because he would catch me out. I was lucky. I never heard my parents argue, but I knew when they argue because my father would come in my room and say, why is your room a mess? My room's always a mess. What did I do now to upset my mother?

Tim Fitzpatrick
So your dad came in and said, Your room's a mess, and you're like, So you pissed off mom, huh?

Robert Blackwell Jr.
Yeah, there you go. It's like, Now I got to punish you because now she's mad at me.

Tim Fitzpatrick
There you go.

Robert Blackwell Jr.
I'm saying, You don't care whether or not my room's messy.

What a Quant is

Tim Fitzpatrick
Okay, so we got to talk about this because some people aren't going to know what this is. So name of your company is Quant16. What is a quant for those, the people that don't know? Because it sounds like something that came straight out of Total Recall?

Robert Blackwell Jr.
Okay, a quant is short for a quantitative analyst. It is somebody that builds models that you can do Predictive and Prescriptive Analytics. So are they quantitative analyst. So what they do is they look at, try to make connections between nature and markets. So for instance, if I'm in Chicago, and in this past January, there was a day it was like 900 degrees below zero. Imagine somebody goes on to Amazon and they order some slippers for the beach in Chicago in January when it's 900 degrees below zero. Amazon knows that they're not going to Lake Michigan. Nobody calls you, nobody interviews you and says why. They know why you're going on vacation. Now, do they absolutely know why? No. You may be crazy. Maybe your best friend made a challenge, but probably you're going on vacation. Therefore, people write the algorithms that present the opportunities that can be executed digitally. What a quant does is they go and look at, again, they look at market data and patterns, the laws of the universe. I think everything is math, physics, and economics. Okay. They understand the natural world and look at data to see how those two things align. Then they write algorithms that predict what's going to happen. They say, If this happens, do X, which is the prescriptive analytics. The people write the algorithms. They say, If somebody orders a summer item from a zip code during January, they're going on vacation, offer them sunscreen , blah, blah, blah. They're writing algorithms, and that's what people do. Then when you order the slippers, there's an algorithm that says, Okay, now offer them sunscreen, offer them a hat, blah, blah, blah. So quants are the people that understand the relationships. They're trying to do predictive and prescriptive analytics. It's a quantitative analyst.

Tim Fitzpatrick
Okay. And to make a joke here, that's all shifting to AI at this point.

Robert Blackwell Jr.
Well, no. I would say what people say about AI is actually nothing to do with intelligence. It's not artificial intelligence. Imagine, let's say, hey, if you're married and you have kids, and let's say you got an eight-year-old boy. Your wife looks at your eight-year-old son and says, What did you do? What's wrong? He says, Nothing. No, I know. Something's going on. What did you do? Did you do something wrong or did something happen to you? How was your day in school? That intuition is really intelligence. I can read... Okay, ChatGPT can't do that. What they really call AI is really content creation automation. It is not simulated general intelligence. We're not there yet. What it does, it can do pattern recognition and understand the laws of content creation. If you put something in ChatGPT and you say, Wow, I'd be ready. Rewrite this sentence. I'd be ready to go to the movie. Rewrite this and make sure that it is grammatically correct. ChatGPT will say, I'm in the mood to go to the movies. The next movie is going to be at this. It didn't look at your face and say, I think you need to go to the movies. It's not intelligence. It's pattern and rule recognition. That's all it is. Then out of that, it's prescriptive analytics that say, Hey, based on what you ask for and the algorithms that we have created and all these connections, this is really, I think, a better way to say this. That's why it's not It's very good in math. It can go and do some analysis. So if you go and you put in a budget, it'll tell me what the budget says. It'll give me some language. In my view, it's not intelligence. It's pattern and rule recognition that leads to content creation automation.

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Everything is Math

Tim Fitzpatrick
Yeah, that's an interesting way to think about it. I like that. So, Robert, as we talked about you're a math major. How has math helped you in your business endeavors?

Robert Blackwell Jr.
Well, I would say it's... What I think is you ought to... There's a book called Good to Great. I think it's a great book. What it says is what you ought to do is when you're going to start a business, there should be three criteria. One is it's an area where you have the potential to be the best in the world. Not you are the best in the world, you have the potential to be the best in the world. It's something that you're really passionate about, and it's something that drives your economic engine. For me, who I consider myself a person of very limited emotional intelligence, I mean, thank God I could add, otherwise I would add no value to the world. I am not a person that can read people's faces. I don't have that intelligence. My father, on the other hand, has about as much emotional intelligence as a human being can have. Now, I don't know that he knows how to add. I'm exaggerating a little bit. He really knows people. That's why he's a great sales guy. He can make you feel a certain way. For me, I got to convince you that the math works. For me, I have a mathematical brain. My brain is wired around pattern recognition, primarily. When I was 12 years old, I was a lousy student because I was actually interested in making money than school. I just went to school to avoid punishment. I was not interested in school at all. For me, my parents actually, since I was such a lousy student, I'm the oldest of five, my sister, who's younger than me, she got all A's and B's, and I'd get B's and C's and D's, and I'd get an A if I was all interested, and mostly I wasn't. My parents went to get me tested. They were sure that I was not totally without intelligence. They weren't sure, but they suspected. They went and got me tested, and I got tested in math. I had always dreamed about, like I could dream in pictures and patterns. When I was 12, I kept saying, what would happen if I kept taking this and I divided it and divided it and divided it and divided it until I couldn't divide it anymore. There are two things in math. Actually, at 12, I created my own theory of fractal geometry. Fractal geometry is a study of self-similar systems. That came about through a... There was a mathematician named Benoît Mandelbrot. If you've ever seen the Mandelbrot set, he created that Branch of math. You define that branch of math. He defined that branch of math. That was in 1982. At 1982, I was 21 at the time. When I was 12, I thought like that. I have a brain that is wired for numbers and patterns. I can tell you my driver's license number, my passport number, almost every phone number that I've ever had, everything, social security, any number that's associated with me, I can tell you what it is. I have a brain that is built for numbers and pattern recognition and decomposing all the different... In physics, there is something called the standard model, which essentially says you can break things down until you can't break... You're left with certain elements that you can't break down anymore. It's called the standard model in physics. Everything to me is math, physics, and economics. I would say I have... Hey, my Michael Jordan was 6 feet 6 fanatically compared. I mean, that is just his thing. I would say there's God blessed me with a limited set of talents. I would say I'm not bad at math. Therefore, everything I do follows that. At IBM, I was never going to be a salesman. Not wanting to embarrass my father who got me the job, frankly. IBM said, You're either a salesman or you're a nobody. Well, I wasn't about to be a salesman. I was too introverted. What I did notice, I got assigned. IBM was in the copier business at the time, and I got assigned to the number one copier salesman in the country. He said, Your job is to make sure I don't lose any installs because if I do, I lose money. That's it. Tell me how I can make money. You're not helping me sell. Tell me how I can make money. So I wrote all the algorithms that would give salespeople signals to upgrade machines. And then that got rolled out all across the country for IBM. I figured now, at least I didn't embarrass my father, and I left.

Tim Fitzpatrick
So you basically wrote a program that looked for that pattern to identify where the opportunities were.

Robert Blackwell Jr.
Well, what I looked at and said, what is the incentives for the salespeople, what the customers are? I wrote the algorithms. They said, If this happens, now go talk to the customer, and now you can tell them to make the upgrade. This is why it's good for you. This is the business case for you to upgrade a machine so me as a salesman can get more commission.

Tim Fitzpatrick
Yeah. But so the algorithm identified the trigger that gave the- That's correct. Yeah.

Robert Blackwell Jr.
So you understood the incentives of the customer. You understood what the incentives the salesperson were and what the rules were for IBM to help you to give you your commission.

Tim Fitzpatrick
But that trigger was a strong signal that the client needed to find.

Robert Blackwell Jr.
Correct. That, exactly. Now, this gives a signal to the sales guy, say, Go talk to the customer now. Tell him that if you sign now, here's the business case and why it's good for you. The algorithm identified why it's good for the sales guy. But now it gives you the business case to go talk to the customer.

Tim Fitzpatrick
Well, you're Your abilities in math... Well, one, you're good with numbers. Numbers are involved in a lot of aspects of business. But the pattern recognition side of it gives you the to see patterns that may present opportunities or patterns that may say, Hey, we need to do something different. So it gives you the ability to see good and bad things before they actually happen.

Robert Blackwell Jr.
I would say that that's right. What I believe is that you can predict almost anything because markets move towards efficiency. You can optimize almost anything because systems move towards self-similarity. You can actually predict how people are going to behave because people move towards incentives. We created something called ecosystem economics, where you can predict how people are going to behave based on the incentives, constraints, alternatives, and interdependencies people use to make decisions. For instance, if you were to go and talk to a CFO and say, I've identified a billion dollars worth of savings for you. The question is, what's he going to do with that? It depends on what's in it for him. If he thinks he shows it to the CEO, and the CEO is going to say, You mean you've been here for five years? You've lost me $5 billion? It's not whether the CEO is going to say that, it's whether he believes the CEO is going to say that. If that's the case, it's going to be a pocket veto. But if he thinks he's going to win the Nobel Prize, man, he's going to tell everybody and their grandmother. I would say everything I think is math, physics, and economics.

The Universal Theory of Getting Stuff Done

Tim Fitzpatrick
Yeah. One of the things you shared with me was that you have this belief that there's a formula for everything. You have this formula as it relates to your business. Can you share that and just break it down?

Robert Blackwell Jr.
Sure. This is what I call, this is my universal theory of getting stuff done.

Tim Fitzpatrick
Okay.

Robert Blackwell Jr.
Is that results equals the quality of strategy plus execution divided by time. So always start with what you want to get accomplished. Create a strategy that makes you unique and loved in a category by a customer. So with strategy, you want a high degree of differentiation because you get your margin from differentiation customer love, and lean operations. Why you want a high degree of delta or differentiation in your strategy, you want a high degree of efficiency in execution. So your execution are people, processes, tools, and facilities. So people do work in space. People do work in space, delivering service to other people. So you can think about everything formulaically. And then as As a ratio, and this is why I think most people actually, there's a whole lot of investment or it's not, it's spend on transformation that almost always fails. Question why? It's because modernization is a combination of innovation and transformation. Innovation is a scientific process of ideation, calculation, and experimentation. Transformation is the implementation of what comes out of innovation. You can think about innovation ties to strategy, transformation ties to execution. Most people actually are very undisciplined, in my view, when it comes to thinking about business. In the book Good to Great, which is one of the books I think are terrific, it says, Discipline Discipline people, engage in discipline thought, taking discipline action. We say it's a lot of people like overspend on technology. I think technology is simply a tool that helps you automate the work of delivering your services to your stakeholders. If you have an applied lean, which lean simply means the elimination of waste from work, You want a high degree of differentiation. There's another thing as we think about there's a formula which I want to go into, a brand. If you think about Apple, Apple sells a commodity, so does Nike. But why does Nike make 92% of all the profits in the mobile phone industry? It is because of brand. That's a feeling that a customer has about you in a category. There is no such thing as general trust. Trust is categorical. You have to think about that from a business perspective. I would say the thing that has really helped us survive is, I would call it not having superficial analytics, but being able to break down things into their components. When I was a trader, that also I actually looked at the stock market. I mapped it by hand for 100 years of daily. I took this charting paper. I looked at the stock market movement, daily movement for every day, over a hundred-year period. I got pretty good at recognizing patterns. Then I could apply that to different trading methodologies. So then I would look at how did people react to different incentives. If you're in trading and you sell an option, it's like selling an insurance policy, you get premium. But all of a sudden, if the market starts to go against you, you panic. We had a strategy around that. I would say that is why we've been able to be successful. Just applying the principles that other people use in different industries and applying it to ours.

Applying Principles from Other Industries to Drive Business Growth

Tim Fitzpatrick
I love that. You think that one of the biggest drivers of your growth business-wise has been applying principles that you've seen work in other industries to your own?

Robert Blackwell Jr.
Yes. I would say one of the things that you have to do is if markets move towards efficiency, that means you're continually fighting commoditization. You don't want to be the last CD manufacturer in the market. Unfortunately, people don't think about my exploiting versus my exploring versus exploiting budget. Eventually, all markets collapse. They go away. Now with algorithms, it's going to happen faster and faster and faster. If you're in a market and Amazon can come into your market, you are going to be dead. There will be no more margin. In our business, since there's 50 billion people in the world that write software, we said, We got to get of that business because it will be a commodity. How do we take what's unique to us and make the shift and get into something where there's growth versus where there's stagnation and there's death? Sometimes you have to make that trade-off and you have to make a bet. That's the other thing that I learned from the trading world is never get too high when things are going your way and don't get too low when they're going against you. There's always a tornado, an earthquake, a market crash that's coming. It's always coming. What I would say and why we've survived is, all businesses go through their up and downs. I'd say when it's raining, the buckets are out. Because there's come a time when there's a drought and you have to be able to survive and you have to be able to look at investment. We look at all spend as investment in a monetizable outcome. Capex is monetize... Excuse me. Capex is investment in new capabilities. Opex is investment in operational delivery. When we break out our business, it starts out with product development. What are you going to take to the market? What emotional or financial problem can you solve for somebody? We always think about business is love and money. Then how do you fill the funnel, close the deal? Then how do you deliver what you sell? That's COGS or service delivery. Then administration is counting your money, paying your bills, managing your risk. We think as everything is a ratio of a monetizable outcome. Then we think, what's our inside game and outside game? In product development, what are we going to do versus what services do we buy and claim an acquisition? If somebody can do it better, faster, and cheaper than we do, we buy it as a service. If it's not core for us, we buy it as a service. Because everything has a cost. Time, energy, and money. There's investment. If I have to have 17 meetings in a day because I have to hug somebody, that's a cost. I'd The other buy it. The way I look at it is if there's a vendor, they get paid for helping me solve a problem. I don't have to worry about kissing them and hugging them and tell them they're wonderful. I have to be a good I'm a partner, I have to be create a win-win, but I don't have all the overhead that I have with an employee. I want fewer people that make more money in our company. You've got to come on this journey, and what we expect of you is to be world-class in whatever it is your responsibility is. I would say for us, it's like everything is math, even on the revenue side. What is the universe of prospects that we have? We have a very mathematical way of thinking about that. What's it cost us to fill the funnel and then close the deal? How do we differentiate ourselves? Because if you're like, it's like we've, I don't want to say given up on LinkedIn, but once one person does it, Everybody else listens to all the podcasts and the YouTube channels. They all start to do that, and then those strategies become not effective because everybody is just there are a bunch of lemmings. Principles are a different animal. Tactics can be commoditized. Principles are something very different. We try to think, what are the principles? Then you apply the principles. What we've decided from the B2B revenue side, we're not going to spend a bunch of money putting content that our employees look at, mostly. It's just interesting stuff. We are shifting to in-person connecting with individuals. So part of ours is doing learning. We think quantitative FP&A. FP&A is part of the financial function. So who is it that we can solve what problem for that aligns to us? We started off thinking as we made this shift, talking to the CIO. It's the wrong customer. The CFO now has to... They're the people who manage investments. That much more aligns to what we're doing. FP&A is a part of one of the functions within the CFO. If we can differentiate ourselves in an area where they've got pain, where they're willing to trust us, so that's our focus. I'd say, imagine for us and your brand, nobody's going to trust us in doing $100 million tech project. They would rather go with Accenture or Deloitte, even if they knew they're going to fail. Why? Because if they fail, they can say, Hey, nobody gets fired for picking IBM. That used to be. Listen, it is what it is. Go figure out a place where your brand has meaning and the people will trust you. I say, if we were, so imagine this, a group of startup of quants came out of Google. These were the guys that escaped Google. Now, could they go and talk to a big financial services company, say, Hey, we wrote all the algorithms. There was a secret project in Google that we wrote. We can tell you, predict what's going to happen and how you can connect with your customers and how they're going to behave. We can give you this capability for only. Now, what's the likelihood that they would have paid attention to that group, even though it was a startup? Very high. Why? That's the power of brand. I don't think people think about their brand. Brand just sounds soft and fuzzy. But it is absolutely the thing, in my view, that you have to pay the biggest attention to and from a revenue perspective, because that determines how much you can charge because it allows... It's where your customer can trust you.

Tim Fitzpatrick
Well, Robert, you shared a few things that I want to pull out because you've mentioned differentiation multiple times. Differentiation from a marketing standpoint, especially, is incredibly important, but it's something that a lot of businesses struggle with. When we struggle with it, if we look like everybody else, we compete on price. And that's a horrible place to be. The other thing that you touched on that I think is really important and resonates a lot with me because it's how I approach marketing is you talked about the principles, the fundamentals. So the other things you touched on, Robert, was you talked about principles, which really resonates with me from a marketing standpoint, because that's one of the first things I think about with Marketing is the principles and the fundamentals, because the principles and fundamentals in any discipline, they don't change. Yet so many of us, they're not sexy, right? They're not cool. They're not the latest, greatest tactics. And so many of us just jump right into the tactics without actually having the fundamentals and the principles in place, which lay the foundation for success. And so I love the fact that you guys focus a lot on differentiation. And what are the principles that we need to focus on? Because those are the things that are critical for success. If they're lacking. Things that we try, things that we do to grow the business are going to struggle. And so thank you for bringing those two things up because they are super, super important. And the other thing that you touched on was applying principles that you learned from other businesses, right? Things that you've seen in other industries, right? Things that have worked in other industries that can be applicable to yours because those are easy for us to overlook. But there are so many things we can learn from other industries and apply to our own. So getting out of tunnel vision, I think is really, really important.

Robert Blackwell Jr.
I would say in that, I got that actually from a book called Blue Ocean Strategy. It was another great book, which talks about differentiation. It's the red ocean versus the blue ocean. It's It says, look across industries. We've always done that. I have two companies, Quant 16 and a company called Killerspin. When I started Killerspin, Which is a company that's in the table tennis industry, but it's really about connecting people to the people that they love, that need their love through break time play. When we looked at that, I looked at, I wanted a brand that was sexy, edgy, but non-offensive. Then I looked at the automobile industry and say, How do they represent their brand? The customer set is pretty similar for us. It is affluent people with kids that got big houses. Then if I looked at the set, who else shares the space? I would call playable furniture. I said, Hey, there's pool, billiards. When we started the company, the highest price for a table to his table was $400. We started at $2,500. Why? Because if it was playable furniture, that's not that much for a pool table, and there's nobody else in the space. Then we created, we figured, if we made table tennis sexy, that would put the stud factor in the sport. Then all of these two kids, kids that were too short, too skinny, too scared to play other big sports, now it would give them, especially boys between 8 and 15 years old who are always insecure, especially if they're not the stud athlete. We looked at skateboarding. Say, what emotional problem did people solve? That was it. Now with Quant 16, as we looked at wealth Management and the quantitative hedge fund. How do they get paid? They get paid on alpha or the delivery of value. That market is being commoditized. But those principles in a very.... In an industry that is super inefficient, we can take the same principles and apply it to where the quants aren't. In the publicly traded markets, now you need $150 million tech budget to compete. Because now you got to be able to trade thousand times a second. It's all model-driven now. Those principles apply to other areas. That's how we like to look at things.

Conclusion

Tim Fitzpatrick
Robert, knowing what you know now, is there anything you would do differently?

Robert Blackwell Jr.
Yes. I would say the company It benefits from my strengths, but also suffers from my weaknesses. Since I am a numbers person, but I don't have very much emotional intelligence. So what would have done, the things I think that we did right in the beginning, we focused on the who. But I would have been better off hiring somebody to focus on client acquisition, and I focused on product development because since I've never had a job, I mean, I worked at IBM when I was 21, I am not a professional salesperson. I'm a guy who's more like a dealmaker. For me, you have to be a nerd and give us a chance. There are people who have much bigger businesses because they have systematized client acquisition. That is a profession that most technical people don't appreciate enough. I would say if I could go back and we're trying to remedy it, I would have an executive who was much more... Who could professionalize client acquisition because that's the area where I'm the weakest. That's the one, I would say the big lesson that I would learn. But since I'm so terrible at it, I can hire mathematicians and physicists and economists and engineers. I do a pretty good job of hiring those people. Sales people, I'm just terrible.

Tim Fitzpatrick
Well, knowing is half the battle, right? And once we identify those blind spots, then we can correct them. So I appreciate you sharing that. Robert, where can people learn more about you?

Robert Blackwell Jr.
Well, here's what I would say. You can go to... My email is rblackwell@quant16.com. I'm on LinkedIn. You can just Google. I mean, you can go on to LinkedIn, type my name, Robert Blackwell Jr. But I would say you can just reach out by email. We just like to help people just to be helpful. That's what we think. If there's something we can be helpful, just give us a call. We meet with anybody. We'll help just to be helpful.

Tim Fitzpatrick
We will make sure that that stuff shows up, gets in the show notes. The website is quant16, the number, not spelled out, dot com. And we'll make sure that your LinkedIn URL goes in there as well. So, Robert, thank you so much for taking the time to share your experience. The way you think you're just so strong on that mathematical side, there are things that you see that a lot of people don't. And so I really appreciate sharing that with us. I think there's a lot to take away from this episode. So thank you for being here.

Robert Blackwell Jr.
Thank you.

Tim Fitzpatrick
Those of you that are watching, listening, I appreciate you as well. If you want to connect with us, rialtomarketing.com. That's rialtomarketing.com. You can also, over at revenueroadblockscorecard.com, there are nine revenue roadblocks that we help clients remove so they can accelerate growth. If you want to know which of the nine are slowing down your growth, you can do that there in less than five minutes. So thank you again. Until next time. Take care.


Connect With Robert Blackwell Jr.


Links From The Episode


About the author, Tim Fitzpatrick

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