What’s the Worst That Could Happen? With David Cieslak

In This Episode

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What it was like

David Cieslak aka Inspector Gadget
Chief Cloud Officer – he helps clients adopt and migrate to business products that are in the cloud.

He works mostly with accountants, controllers, and CFO’s

David always knew he wanted to be an entrepreneur.
Grew up in a family of 6 kids.

His hero growing up was Thomas Edison – who was always passionate about that “smarter, better way.”

David did something really interesting as a child entrepreneur.

He knocked on neighbor’s doors and asked if they had any broken appliances.

And he fixed them!

When he would bring them back, you can imagine the shock on his neighbor’s faces.

Heath Electronics – remember these?

By college David elected to major in economics but not until almost near the end, and he took a lot of accounting courses.

David put himself through school. All of his siblings also put themselves through school and got advanced degrees.

The CPA profession was something David looked at as mainly a continuation of his education. With an accounting background you get exposure to lots of things.

What happened

David loved to teach people about technology, and that is essentially what lead him to speak.

Always have something ready!

If you want to speak, have a few talks prepared and ready to go.

Loren Fogelman mentioned here. She’s a friend of mine who was asked to fill in for a speaker who didn’t show up at the LA Accounting and Finance Show.

Moving on to start his own firm early in his career, meant struggling to pay bills, and living on credit cards. David started from nothing. They didn’t take any clients with them.

When he and his wife finally got engaged, his wife told him they needed to clean up his finances.

The early days were “dicey.”

They had to skip paychecks more than once, and sometimes twice in a row.

This created some stress, but it made him wiser, and more astute later on.

Then as the firm started to grow they never had to skip anything for the firm.

When the owner of a business doesn’t take a paycheck it skews the financial health of the company.

During the tough times, David credits his wife for talking him off the ledge.

His dad had also given him good counsel years ago.

It can be summed up in one simple question:

What’s the worst that could happen?

Think about that question as you find yourself having to work through those tough times.

What it’s like today

David actively sought opportunities to talk to business groups with the idea in mind that it would help him grow his company.

If you are able to tell your own story, and really engage with people, you can create relationships.

It’s not just about solving the technical problems. It really is about the relationships.

Building relationships is about listening. That is the most important skill.

Don’t throw questionnaires at clients. Just ask them what’s going on. Then take the cotton out of your ears, put it in your mouth, and start taking notes.

What is Inspector Gadget all about?

Every year David looks at emerging technology to see what he thinks will take and what he thinks would fail.

What are some of David’s favorite technologies?

He just got a Tesla Model 3.

What does David see for the future?

The Apple Watch is still by far the market leader. Might see things like UV detection.

Where can you catch David?

Follow him on Twitter for info:

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