Resources for Buying and Selling Online Businesses

Increase Your Odds of Success With Any Goal


Joe Valley

Joe Valley is the Co-owner and Director of Brokerage Services at Quiet Light, a business advisory firm that helps online entrepreneurs achieve amazing exits. Joe joined the firm after selling his own e-commerce business through Quiet Light in 2010. He has advisor expertise in all web-based niches, including SaaS, e-commerce, and content businesses.

In addition to being a frequent speaker and podcast guest himself, Joe is also the co-host of the Quiet Light Podcast.

Here’s a glimpse of what you’ll learn:

  • [01:13] Joe Valley talks about how he held himself accountable while writing his book The EXITpreneur’s Playbook
  • [02:52] How a professional publishing service helped Joe achieve his goals
  • [04:31] Why writing versus verbally stating your goals might be the reason you succeed
  • [06:03] Joe details an example of how accountability and sharing goals helped him reach a goal
  • [08:22] Joe shares how to set and focus on future business goals

In this episode…

Are you aligned with your personal and business goals for the future? Do you want to take the leap and begin achieving your goals instead of remaining stagnant?

It is a new year, and as an entrepreneur, you’re ready for the extraordinary — but then distractions and procrastination set in and push you further from your goals. What can you do? Joe Valley explains why writing down your goals has a high success rate and prevents you from being stuck in an endless cycle of excuses.

Join Joe Valley in this episode of the Quiet Light Podcast as he shares expert advice on increasing your likelihood to achieve personal and business goals. Joe talks about his experience using a scribe to publish his book, a study that revealed the effective methods for goal achievement, and aligning your business goals with the proper plan for you to achieve greatness.

Resources mentioned in this episode:

Sponsor for this episode…

This episode is brought to you by Quiet Light, a brokerage firm that wants to help you successfully sell your online business.

There is no wrong reason for selling your business. However, there is a right time and a right way. The team of leading entrepreneurs at Quiet Light wants to help you discover the right time and strategy for selling your business. They provide trustworthy advice, effective strategies, and honest valuations. So, your Quiet Light advisors aren’t your everyday brokers — they’re your partner and friend through every phase of the exit planning process.

If you’re new to the prospect of buying and selling, Quiet Light is here to support you. Their plethora of top-notch resources will provide everything you need to know about when and how to buy or sell an online business. Quiet Light offers high-quality videos, articles, podcasts, and guides to help you make the best decision for your online business.

Not sure what your business is really worth? No worries. Quiet Light offers a free valuation and marketplace-ready assessment on its website. That’s right—this quick, easy, and free valuation has no strings attached. Knowing the true value of your business has never been easier!

What are you waiting for? Quiet Light offers the best experience, strategies, and advice to make your exit successful. To learn more, go to, email [email protected], or call 800.746.5034 today.

Episode Transcript

Intro  0:07

Hi, folks. It’s the Quiet Light Podcast where we share relentlessly honest insights, actionable tips, and entrepreneurial stories that will help founders identify and reach their goals.

Joe Valley  0:28

Hey, folks, Joe Valley here. Thanks for joining me for another episode of The Quiet Light Podcast. I appreciate you spending time with me every week. And this week, it’s gonna be a little short. We’re gonna spend a few minutes talking about goal setting. And I want to share a little bit of story about my own journey to actually finally writing the book. You know, I’ve been trying to do this for, I want to say four or five years. On The EXITpreneur’s Playbook, I had the concept and the idea, outlined it. And I never really got passed, or even through the introduction, until I was sitting around a fire pit with some friends on a weekend night, out here on Lake Norman in North Carolina. And I made an announcement I said, Hey, Bruce, Dana, I just want to make an announcement, I want you guys to hold me to this and ask for updates on a regular basis. He said, I’m writing a book, this is what it’s about. This is my timeline. This is the goal, the objective of the book, and I’m sharing it with you because I want you to hold me accountable, I want you to check in with me, I’m going to check in with you tell you how I’m doing. I want you to randomly ask me how it’s going. And that propelled me to actually get it done that one conversation around a fire pit with a bottle of wine allowed me to actually push through and get my goal achieve, which was writing a book on selling online businesses. Now, I had a path that I was going to go down to write the book. And that’s not the one I ended up going down. You know, I thought I was going to be you know, King this in and writing it out like a normal author would or like most authors, I guess I don’t know about I don’t know what normal is these days. But I kept pushing down that path. And every time Bruce or Dana asked, I gave them an update. I hadn’t made a whole lot of progress. But because I think you know, I put it out there into the universe, something came to me. And that was me going to an event where Scott Volker was speaking on stage and announcing that he had written a book and he showed the book to everybody gave the book to everybody and introduced his scribe, the person he brought out on stage was his scribe, young lady named Brandon from scribe media, they, instead of an author, writing everything in the book, writing everything, typing it in and editing it and things of that nature. It’s done through interviews, Brandon, and I outlined the book in further detail. And then she interviewed me for each section of the book, gave it to me to then review and edit it put My words on paper, instead of just typing it out. It was the best way for me to achieve my goals. But I don’t think I would have gotten there. If I hadn’t made the announcement to Bruce and Dana, that I was going to make going to going to write the book, I think I still would have floundered and no one would have held me accountable. And I wouldn’t have held my self accountable either. And I want to share something with you along those lines. I didn’t, I always knew that writing down goals was important. And I do it much more effectively now and much in much more detail. But I’m going to share this with you. Because I want you to think about your personal goals and your professional goals. And I want you to follow the path of most success of the greatest chances of succeeding in terms of writing your goals down. One of the most often cited studies done on the importance of goal setting was done by a Dr. Matthew, she’s a psychology professor at the Dominican University of California, she had a group consisting of 149 participants from a variety of backgrounds. These are entrepreneurs, bankers, healthcare workers, retail, profit, nonprofit, all sorts of folks from a variety of different countries as well the US Belgium, India, Australia, Japan, and she randomly put them into five different groups. I’m going to lay down what she did for each group. So in group number one, she said, Look, folks, all I want you to do is to think about your goals. And then we’re going to come back and revisit and see you know, how far along you got in terms of succeeding with those goals. Group number two, write out their goals. Group number three, write out your goals, right action steps with deadlines for those goals. Group number four, do all of number one, two and three, plus, send the goal and action steps to a supportive Fred. And group number five, you had to do all of number 123 and four, and send a weekly progress report to those friends.

You know, I saw Dan and Bruce on a regular basis. We traveled together. And it was not weekly, but it was a regular progress report probably once or twice a month. At the end of the four week period, the group with the most people who achieve their goals was obviously number five, you knew that was coming. It’s not a surprise. That group, I had 76% of the people accomplishing their goals, while only 42% accomplished their goals in group number one, that was the group who didn’t write it down, they just thought about their goals, that’s almost 100% greater chance of success. When you write down your goals in detail. Share your goals with a friend, and then give them a weekly progress report on your goals. It’s important that you think about that, whether you are buying a business, or selling a business, or on a weight loss kick for the summer, whatever it might be. When you’ve got the support of friends and family, accountability of colleagues and things of that nature, you are going to have a much greater chance of succeeding at your goal. I did this last spring, with five friends from around the country, we had a weight loss challenge, we all set our goals. We did this in a Google sheet that we all shared our goals in terms of how much we were going to lose. And by the end, it was at the end of March 2021. And each week, we had a weigh in on Sunday morning. And we put those goals, there were a little side that going Whoever didn’t achieve their goals had to pay everybody else a certain amount of money. I think four out of five of us achieved our goals. And honestly, if I hadn’t had that accountability I’ve been I’ve been trying to get back down to my wedding weight, right. I’ve been married for 24 years now. And I got back down to my wedding weight Finally, after 24 years, and we had six or seven pounds to lose. But it was impossible because I didn’t have accountability for it. I didn’t, I didn’t weigh in, I didn’t share the goal with somebody and hold them accountable. And vice versa. When I did that, four out of five of us achieved the goal. And the fifth person honestly was just there harassing us and giving us a hard time the whole time, it was kind of fun. He never really put in the effort. And that’s okay, this isn’t 100% chance of success process. It The point is to greatly improve your chances of success. So if you want to buy a business, write down what you want to buy, how much of a business do you want to buy? How much can you spend? Do you want to spend? Get detailed? Do you want it you know, how much cash flow Do you want it to have? How much discretionary earnings Do you want it to have? How old do you want it to be? What kind of growth rate Do you want it to have? How are you going to finance it all of those things, write it down, and then share it with a friend or colleague, somebody else that may be in a similar mastermind group or listens to the podcast, so that you’re both trying to go after the same thing. And you can share thoughts and ideas with each other. The same goes true for you people that are selling your business or just operating your business, you are going to exit your business someday, are you going to exit it at a time of your choosing at a value of your choosing with a deal structure of your choosing? Or are you just gonna wake up and decide to sell and get what you can for it. If you want to be in that first group, write down your goals, I will sell my business for X amount of dollars in the third quarter of this year. And when I do I will feel XYZ write all of those things down dollars, date and feeling and get as detailed as possible. And then share it with somewhere, share it with an advisor at Quiet Light that helps you reverse engineer a path to those goals. That’s their jobs, right?

We do valuations for folks, we tell them what their business is worth within a certain range, and then can compare it to their goal and say, Alright, you’re not quite there. In fact, I saw an email from Elaine today out to a client said, you know, if you want to achieve the goal that we’ve set forth, you probably need to wait six more months based upon the trends in the numbers. And at that point, we’re very confident we can hit your goals. If you need to move forward. Now we understand and we can do that. But it’s going to be a bit more of a challenge. So she’s giving them the option. Right? They wrote down their goals, they went through it with her the reverse engineering a path to that. And she’s giving them honest advice, which is maybe you would need to wait six more months to put some more money in your pocket. And you’re gonna fix a couple of things that she noticed in terms of the way the business is being operated to set those goals. So write down your goals, write them down in detail, put some dollars date and feeling to it, and share it with a friend and have that friend ask for weekly updates. And you give them weekly updates as much as you can, and then put it everywhere, right. We’ve all talked about and heard about and seen in movies, people that write their daily goals on their mirror, when they’re shaving in the morning and getting ready for the day or I often have them on my computer monitor or on my my screen when I’m saving. It’s always there. It’s always a reminder And somehow, some way when you’re sharing that with others where you see it every day, you’re more likely to push for it through those. Alright folks, I’m going to stop rambling now. That’s it for me today. Focused on goals. They do work, talk to some friends about it if we can do anything here at Quiet Light to help you with those reverse engineering a path to those goals, helping keep you accountable, reach out to us. That’s what we’re here for. We’re here to help. Thanks.

Outro  10:27

Today’s podcast was produced by Rise25 And the Quiet Light content team. If you have a suggestion for a future podcast subject or guest, email us at [email protected]. Be sure to follow us on YouTube, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Instagram and subscribe to the show wherever you get your podcasts. Thanks for listening. We’ll see you next week.

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