Steven Levy is the President of SEL & Associates. He started this business in 2008. SEL & Associates helps business owners develop and achieve their goals. He accomplishes this by providing practical advice that works. Clients have asked for his help in putting together business plans, growing sales and profits, improving cash flow, dealing with employee issues, and developing an exit strategy. Steven is accredited by the Institute for Independent Business.
Steven has many years of experience in the business industry. As VP and General Manager of a major corporation, he was responsible for a business unit with annual sales of over $150 million, 3 factory locations (2 in the US and 1 in the United Kingdom), over 200 employees, and did business in over 60 countries.
Steven is the definition of professionalism. Steven conducts oneself with responsibility, integrity, accountability, and excellence. He communicates effectively and appropriately and always finding a way to be productive.
Steven has a BS degree in Industrial Technology from Lowell Technological Institute (Lowell Massachusetts) and an MBA from Bryant College (Smithfield Rhode Island).
I started SEL & Associates in 2008. After completing a very successful career in the corporate world, small business consulting became my second act.
My clients are small entrepreneurial companies. Most were started by the owner for at least one of three reasons.
- Strong technical skill
- Passion about something
- Tired of working for a living for someone else
Most check at least two of these and quite a few check all three. In the United States, the national statistics prevail, most will fail within the first 5 years. However, a reasonable percentage will begin to generate meaningful sales and add employees. At this point, the owner must shift from being the all-knowing doer, to a true manager of their business. Most owners find this transition difficult. They find that the business controls their life, not the other way around. In this transition stage is where I find my best clients and have the best results. I can apply my skills and experiences to almost any business. My focus is not on what they do, my focus is on how they do it.
I am typically referred to my clients by my other clients or through other influence spheres, like BNI. There are three symptoms that will facilitate an interest in an owner wanting to meet with me
- Lack of cash and / or lack of profitability
- No time
- The organization makes repetitive mistakes
Each one of these problems often have common root issues despite the product or service provided.
Lack of Cash | Lack of Profitablity
There are two common problems in the area. Many of my clients offer payment terms and don’t do a sufficient job have establishing and enforcing credit policy. The second area is often a result of under valuing and underpricing their product or service.
This is always an organization issue and fear of delegation. Working with the owner to build a leadership and getting comfortable with delegation is the only way for the owner to able to not be at the business 24/7.
This is caused by a lack of systems, processes, documentation and communication. Working with the owner and key employees, this problems can be diagnosed and solved.
I know these sound like simple and obvious solutions, but often the owner is too close to their business to see them. The outsider prospective is the real value I bring to my clients. Once I can bring a few early victories, the owner will be more willing to share their real vision and desires. It is at this point that I become a “Trusted Advisor” and can really help with setting a longer term strategy. I have helped my clients make significant capital investments, strategic acquisitions and even developing an exit strategy.
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