“I’ve got nothing but positive feedback about Anna and the Masterclass… She’s able to bring all different facets of commerce and make them relevant to everyone in the room.”
Matt Faint | Managing Director – Anna Samios Masterclass
Matt Faint, Founder and Managing Director of Cardionexus, has been carrying his business plan around in his head for the past fourteen years. That’s not to say that Cardionexus, a company that provides non-invasive cardio diagnostic services across the east coast of Australia, had been sitting on their laurels. In fact, Matt and his team had steered the business through substantial growth and had just secured investment to expand further. For Matt, joining the Anna Samios Scaling Up Masterclass was about making the most of the opportunity that was in front of him.
“My role is to make sure that we can make the most efficient use of our investment to scale up the business,” says Matt. “My biggest frustrations come from knowing there’s an opportunity there and not meeting that opportunity.”
A large part of that frustration came from the fact that Matt knew he needed to get the business out of his head and onto paper. Cardionexus had just acquired two new businesses and Matt needed to ensure his team members were all on the same page.
Cutting the plan
Matt’s dilemma is one that many founders face – how to focus on the business when you’re so busy working in the business. Matt’s issue wasn’t that he was reluctant to share – he simply hadn’t found the time or an effective method to communicate his vision. The Scaling Up Masterclass gave Matt the space to nut out the strategic plan. In just a few days he was able to tick off a big task that had been lingering on his to-do list for the last fourteen years.
“I found the workshop really helpful to formalise what was in my head and get everyone else in the team on the same page. Like many entrepreneurs, I had ideas about where I wanted to take our business,” says Matt. “But as the business grows, more people become involved, and then it’s not just about me anymore. I was lacking the processes we needed to get the team aligned and focused.”
Matt and three members of his leadership team joined Anna’s two-day intensive Scaling Up Masterclass where the core focus is cutting a strategic plan for your business. Matt says the team walked out of Anna’s masterclass feeling reinvigorated and focused, but what he found interesting was that the key takeaways for each team member were different. This makes sense when you consider that the Scaling Up framework aligns the team by assigning clear accountability across the team.
“Getting the business down on paper and then breaking it down into the five-day plan, weekly plan and three-month plan was incredibly useful,” says Matt. “And now it’s helping us empower other people in the organisation.”
Cash is king
Cardionexus has always been in the enviable position of being a great cash flow business, but after attending Anna’s Scaling Up Masterclass the company has implemented changes to improve that cash flow even more. Matt says Anna’s Masterclass has had an amazing impact on his team.
“Fiona, our CFO, got a lot out of the course. It was really important for the CFO to see the value of cash flow and how important it is to Scaling Up. It brought to our attention the importance of bringing debtors forward and shortening lead times. We’ve implemented that, and it’s made a massive difference to the business.”
Cashflow brings opportunity. As Matt explains, having strategies in place to increase cashflow means that Cardionexus can make informed decisions around timing, such as when to buy capital equipment. Having more control over cash flow has removed an entire layer of uncertainty and has led to more rigour and confidence when reporting to the board.
Aligning the team
One of Matt’s other key takeaways from Anna’s Masterclass was conducting regular face to face, focused meetings, so the team can circle back and check in on accountability. The Scaling Up framework stresses the importance of productive meetings as a key way to align the team. For Matt, this is the one area he feels he could implement better. The demands of rapid growth and the constant changes brought into play by COVID-19 have made the upkeep of regular meetings a struggle. But Matt is confident that once the new team members are all under the one roof, he’ll be able to get back on track.
In fact, just knowing there is a structure in place that he can implement is a source of comfort for Matt. Implementing the Scaling Up framework throughout the expansion has given him time to focus on opportunity and new service provisions. It’s an exciting time for both him and the team. Having a clearly defined line of sight that they are all working together works to align the team and fill them with energy.
Embracing entrepreneurial spirit
Matt is a natural entrepreneur, but as he points out, here in Australia we haven’t had the exposure to an entrepreneurial culture and it can be hard to move from idea to execution. Helping Australian businesses to succeed is Anna’s passion and she understands the challenges Matt is talking about. She’s able to bring her years of industry experience and apply it to the Scaling Up Framework to make it relevant to Australian businesses.
As Matt explains:
“I’ve got nothing but positive feedback about Anna and the course. She’s able to bring all different facets of commerce into the room. There was such a broad range of skill sets in the Masterclass, from engineers to medical professionals like us, and Anna can bring everyone together and show us that we’ve all got the same core requirement no matter the industry.”