075: After earlier start-up success started a sales-training focused online business in 2020. From 1.5 FTE in 2019 to now 20. During COVID applicants skyrocketed from 100 per month to over 1,000 each month (Joseph Fung)

canada fte 11-20 podcast sales $3m-$5m aud software Jan 30, 2021

In this episode, I interview Joseph Fung, the Founder, and CEO of Uvaro, an online tech sales training program that has no-upfront-tuition offering. Joseph is a serial entrepreneur who’s launched six startups and gone through a few successful exits. In 2013, his startup TribeHR was acquired by NetSuite, which ended up being acquired by Oracle four years later. He is also the founder of Kiite, a sales enablement software.

Uvaro launched its first class at the beginning of 2020 and went from having 150 applicants per month to a thousand per month by the end of the year.  They help people sell software and introduce themselves to tech companies, and they don’t charge tuition until the candidate gets a new gig. He endured anxious times deciding whether to sell the company or not. Joseph funded the business through private and venture capital from both Canada and the US. 

He says he felt he had succeeded when he started seeing customer testimonials from customers whose lives were changed by their program. He shared that the hardest thing about growing a small business is doing the right thing at the moment when you’re not prepared. The one thing Joseph would tell himself on day one of starting out in business is, “It’s more fun than you think it’s going to be” Enjoy the interview.  

This Cast Covers:

  • Introducing us to the Uvaro program and how it works. 
  • A view of Joseph Fung’s entrepreneurial journey and his different business ventures.
  • Anchoring success on the idea of creating a work environment where people feel engaged and fulfilled.
  • Creating, writing down, and understanding the desired company values and policies before launching a business.
  • Figuring out what story to share as a way of marketing your business.
  • Recruiting based on values and behaviors that are in alignment with the business culture.
  • Focusing on the customer first and their perspective in order to provide a great experience.
  • Handling disappointments on the rapid growth journey.
  • Developing a habit of personal development through learning.
  • Implementing a well-defined process and system of bringing the right people into his team.
  • Nurturing talent and training a fire team to create value from within.
  • Creating a system to recognize adherence to company values.
  • Achieving work-life balance by being passionate and present in the different aspects of life. 
  • The value that having a board brings to a small business.
  • Keeping your operations clean from the start by making sure your accounting system is good, records are up to date, and efficiently organizing files and contracts.

Additional Resources:

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Quotes:

“If you’re marketing a fast-growing business, the really big thing is to figure out that story you’re going to share” – Joseph Fung

“The decisions and activities you make as a small business owner have real consequences” – Joseph Fung

“Rapid growth means rapid change and sometimes your organization outgrows individuals who are either employees or customers” – Joseph Fung

“You need to be learning consistently because the more information you have, the better you’re going to be” – Joseph Fung

“Don’t get stuck in the trap of using experience as a proxy” – Joseph Fung

“Think about nurturing talent especially if you’re dealing with rapid growth” – Joseph Fung

“I wouldn’t build a business to sell it” – Joseph Fung

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Music from https://filmmusic.io “Cold Funk” by Kevin MacLeod (https://incompetech.com). License: CC BY (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/